Proposed features/hov access

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Provide a way to indicate access limited to High Occupancy Vehicles (HOVs) for motorways and link roads.

It is assumed that HOV includes buses, so any way which is restricted to passenger vehicles only should be additionally tagged psv=no. Many HOV restricted ways in the US permit vehicles which are licensed as motorcycles to use them, even if the only 'occupant' is the driver. These ways should be additionally marked with motorcycle=yes.

Applies to



A link road with a 2+ person HOV-only restriction:

<tag k="highway" v="motorway_link" />
<tag k="access" v="no" />
<tag k="hov" v="2" />

Renderers likely won't care about the number restriction, it's included for use by routing software.


HOV-only motorway link example

  • In North America, a diamond symbol simply means reserved lane. It can refer either to a bus-only lane, or a HOV lane. Perhaps we should use a symbol of a car with a number in it in addition to the diamond? Andrewpmk 03:52, 14 December 2007 (UTC)
I thought about that originally, but decided that it would clutter the map unnecessarily, and to just go with the diamond for rendering. Perhaps additional icons at the ends of the way at z17? Or, perhaps using your suggestion in specialty maps and routing apps? --Cohort 05:13, 22 December 2007 (UTC)
an additional note - I was considering this might be used in the same fashion as directional arrows, one every <x> meters. --Cohort 10:10, 25 December 2007 (UTC)
might not be a goodidea to use a diamond - it has different uses in different countries: for example in nz it means pedestrian crossing Myfanwy 07:47, 26 December 2007 (UTC)
good to know, as I've only been in the US and a small part of Canada --Cohort 11:38, 27 December 2007 (UTC)


This is a very useful tag, there are plenty of these in lots of cities; occasionally, roads in auckland and australian cities, have single lanes reserved for HOV, while the rest of the road remains open for any traffic. any ideas what to do here? a separate tag: key=restrictions value=lane_1|lane_2|lane_3 perhaps? Myfanwy 01:15, 14 December 2007 (UTC)

We have those here, but I think this would be outside the scope of this proposal. Perhaps a tag like hov_lane=left|right|etc.. --Cohort 05:01, 22 December 2007 (UTC)


Please vote either "I approve" or "I reject" below. Voting will be open until Jan 08, 2008.

  • I approve this proposal. -- Robx 16:47, 25 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal. Andrewpmk 18:44, 25 December 2007 (UTC)
  • I reject this proposal, it needs to be more fine-grained, taking into account different restrictions on different lanes, where applicable. Myfanwy 03:25, 3 January 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal. -- Blars 02:00, 10 Jan 2008 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal. --Walley 07:38, 10 January 2008 (UTC)

Extending voting for another two weeks. New close date of Jan 22, 2008. -- Cohort 13:05, 9 January 2008 (UTC)

  • are you going to vote yourself, cohort?

voting has closed, this proposal has been rejected. it will be moved to the rejected features page