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Public-images-osm logo.svg landuse = residential
An area with predominantly houses or apartment buildings. Show/edit corresponding data item.
Rendering in OSM Carto
Group: landuse
Used on these elements
may be used on nodesshould not be used on waysmay be used on areas (and multipolygon relations)should not be used on relations (except multipolygon relations)
Useful combination
Status: de facto

An area of land having predominantly residential buildings such as houses or apartment buildings.

If there is a small (one company/property) area of commercial (or similar) landuse within an otherwise residential area, you can still decide to use landuse=residential for the outline of the whole larger area as a preliminary solution. You could later draw a separate area tagged with landuse=commercial for that commercial establishment.

If the change in landuse is significant, then it makes sense to map it. Significance can either come from size - if there is a whole shopping mall in a residential area, one would probably map this separately - but even something small can be relevant. This is the mapper's decision. If you want to make a hole for another landuse inside a residential area, you can use a multipolygon relation.

The extent of the area should mark the boundary of known residential use, not the extent of the whole town or village.

Separation from roads

It is acceptable to map landuse to stop at the boundary of roads, and it is also acceptable for landuse to overlap road area on roads where the right of way is not significant enough to warrant a break in the landuse area.

It is strongly discouraged to glue landuse to road lines. Glued landuse makes the data much harder to work with. It is better to have the landuse boundary stop at the edge of the road, the edge of right of way, or overlap the road completely.

Named residential areas

The best way to map a named local residential area is not to put a name tag on the landuse=residential area unless absolutely applicable, since it only signifies an area where residences are located. It is better to use a place=* node to have the information about a named area.

place=neighbourhood- A smaller, named, populated area (applicable in most cases)

place=quarter- Larger than a neighborhood in an urban area, smaller than a suburb

place=hamlet- For small named places in rural areas

place=city_block- For named city blocks, normally in Europe.

Apartment complexes

In many areas, apartment complexes are mapped as landuse=residential, residential=apartments. This can be combined with name=* for named apartment complexes, and building=apartments for the actual apartment building itself.

When not to use

This area is landuse=farmland - even if local government zoned it for residential construction and construction is planned in future

This tag should only be used for areas dedicated to and actually used for residential purposes. It should not be used

  • for areas with buildings of unknown use
  • as an abstract wrapper around buildings grouping them without a difference between residential landuse within and other landuses around being observable
  • as additional tag for urban administrative units
  • for areas zoned as residential by local development plans, and not yet used as residential area

Related tags

See also