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Sandbox for testing structuring

I started rearrangement and structuring of the table of values and created a sandbox page to see for myself if and how a structure could be. I have to state, it's not easy to categorize! Feel invited to develop it further! --Chris2map (talk) 18:09, 2 July 2020 (UTC)

Thanks for creating the sandbox. It's a little better. I still think low usage tags like industrial=packaging should still be removed though. It's a pretty basic thing that no article is meant to be exhaustive or list every possible tag/key combo. That said, splitting it up into sections is still helpful. --Adamant1 (talk) 04:35, 3 July 2020 (UTC)
I'm also in favor of this approach : First the general structure, then the details. Moved this topic to the top to be noticed first. @everyone else : please check & participate on the discussion page of the sandbox page to agree on a general structure user:rtfm Rtfm (talk) 23:01, 5 November 2020 (UTC)
I am generally against using the industrial=* key to tag features, as it appears to be generally used as a landuse subtag. There are already established tags to define the kind of factory and products. Please stop adding undiscussed, lowest usage tags like industrial=fish_farm (8 occurences, not clear why this is "industrial", never discussed in a public forum) --Dieterdreist (talk) 22:31, 6 November 2020 (UTC)


The Harbour page suggest tagging the harbour area as landuse=harbour. The landuse=*-page suggests landuse=port, which in turn suggests landuse=industrial + industrial=port. I guess it would be a good idea to clean up these definitions. --Skippern (talk)

Have you seen seaway=*? There are various tags for port tagging. --Dieterdreist (talk) 22:28, 6 November 2020 (UTC)

Definition and difference?

Does anyone know the definition and difference between industrial=wellsite and industrial=well_cluster? Chrabros (talk) 08:32, 9 September 2016 (UTC)

industrial=well_cluster is a larger area with multiple wells, industrial=wellsite is a more general tag, that can be used on sites with solitaire wells as well as well clusters. IMO industrial=wellsite should be preferred over industrial=well_cluster and the well cluster tag can be advised against. --Skippern (talk) 18:26, 2 October 2016 (UTC)

factory vs. furniture vs. ice_factory

Why there are special tags industrial=furniture and industrial=ice_factory?

I thing it should be replaced by: industrial=factory, product=furniture and industrial=factory, product=ice (together with man_made=works)

--Mkyral (talk) 06:24, 3 January 2017 (UTC)

I also see no need for "industrial=ice_factory". It can be mapped adequately with man_made=works + product=ice. --Chris2map (talk) 08:21, 13 June 2020 (UTC)
I agree with removing both of those. Plus, industrial=food_industry and industrial=food_processing. It's not clear how they are different as it is and lists like this shouldn't be exhaustive anyway. What about industrial=rice_mill also, or industrial=bakery (product=baked_goods?) and industrial=brewery (product=alcohol?) though? or for that matter industrial=oil and industrial=slaughterhouse? Going on the high usage of both of them one could argue that the industrial=factory product=* ship has already sank.
The problem is that the tag isn't defined good enough to not include tags like industrial=furniture and it will always be the expensive of using industrial=factory + product=* instead. Unless the definition is clear the tag doesn't apply to "type of industrial object." Although, the difference between a type of industrial and what is being produced isn't really that clear. That said, any tag with extremely low usage shouldn't be included in the list anyway and most of the "type of industrial object" aren't used enough for inclusion IMO. Ultimately, it might be helpful to get rid of the table and use the space to better define things. Since there's really only like 5 tags that are "types of industry" anyway and tables just encourage "listivism." Plus, IMO the article should say how industrial=factory, industrial=*, and man_made=works are different from each other. As it is they all seem to be either the same thing or very similar, and I think that's where most of the problem comes from. --Adamant1 (talk) 00:41, 2 July 2020 (UTC)

Proposing a new value : industrial=grain_storage_centre

I propose this new value in order to add agricultural cooperatives sites in OpenStreetMap. In France, they are quite common, basically, it is a large site with many silos and barns which concentrates crops from farms around before selling at best prices. An example, la Cascap : Currently, it seems that such a site is commonly tagged (in France) : landuse=industrial + industrial=agriculture + operator=[cooperative's name] + operator:type=cooperative.

However, the tag industrial=agriculture is not defined in the page Key:industrial and it would be too hard to define anyway because it is too ambiguous and large in my opinion, so I propose another value instead for those specific sites : industrial=grain_storage_centre.

What do you think about my proposal ?

(Sorry for my broken english, it's not my first language ! :)

CapitaineMoustache (talk) 12:50, 20 February 2019 (UTC)

See above section Talk:Key:industrial#factory_vs._furniture_vs._ice_factory. Currently there's a mix of industrial=process/function, industrial=product, and industrial=product process/function values; togehter with product=* (although associated with manufacturing on-site direcly), and substance=* (or the ambigious content=*). industrial=agriculture would be a kind of industrial=industry value. I don't know - I might tend towards industrial=storage + product=grain. We have industrial=warehouse, however silos won't usually be called "warehouse". When comapred with Talk:Key:industrial#Open_air_storage section below, either they would exist as a more specific same-key value compared to industrial=storage (ie choose from industrial=storage, industrial=warehouse, etc); or they should be a sub-tag (eg storage=warehouse, storage=silo, etc). -- Kovposch (talk) 11:53, 7 May 2020 (UTC)
For the output of a facility I would use product=* and for the input substance=*. – To proposed grain_storage_centre, how about industrial=storage_centre + product=grain? --Chris2map (talk) 07:57, 13 June 2020 (UTC)
There's 115 uses of the tag industrial=storage and a key "storage" with 2386 uses that weirdly doesn't have a Wiki article. Maybe those would be a good way to do it. The storage key so far is confined to substances though, not objects. Which makes sense IMO. The warehouse/silo isn't what's being stored. There's also a proposal for landuse=storage. Which might be an option. Except I'm not a fan of nesting together landuses. Plus, industrial=storage + storage=whatever is just clearer. --Adamant1 (talk) 04:45, 3 July 2020 (UTC)

Open air storage

When I see a piece of open land used as a storage area for various goods (often for building materials), it's easy to tag it as landuse=industrial because that seems to match the definition. That's where the easy part ends because we don't have a documented tag for describing the industry further. We do have industrial=warehouse but "warehouse" is usually understood to refer to a building, or a set of buildings. Until I'm admonished, I will be tagging these places with industrial=storage. -- T99 (talk) 08:41, 29 April 2020 (UTC)

I edited the description accordingly. -- Kovposch (talk) 11:45, 29 April 2020 (UTC)
You could specify it is outdoor storage. There are quite a few *=open-air tags, yet they seem to ignore location=outdoor (common) or indoor=yes (for indoor features). -- Kovposch (talk) 12:07, 7 May 2020 (UTC)


"chemical" would be a basic value for industrial so it should be on the list, IMO. I'm surprised that it's only used 66 times so far. The ouput could be tagged with product=*. --Chris2map (talk) 07:11, 13 June 2020 (UTC)

smelter, smeltery, smelting

Instead of creating a separate value for each type of smelter (iron, steel, aluminium, ...) I would use "smelter" as universal value and then use substance=* to specify it. The addition of product=* would also be possible. Following this, I would take aluminium_smelting off the list (used 18 times so far). --Chris2map (talk) 07:26, 13 June 2020 (UTC)

I agree with that. The numbers are to low anyway. What's the difference between a smelter and a factor though? and would it also include industrial=steelmaking? IMO it should, but I don't know if a steelmaker is a smelter.

"Food processing" vs "food industry"

It's not really clear what the difference is. IMO one should be removed, or both should be (they are both horrible semantically) and landuse=factory + product=food should be used instead. --Adamant1 (talk) 01:48, 2 July 2020 (UTC)

landuse=factory seems even worse and duplicate of landuse=industrial + man_made=works/industrial=factory Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 08:30, 2 July 2020 (UTC)
Both are equally bad. It's a wild west, so at the very least I added Taginfo stats as a temporary remedy before. -- Kovposch (talk) 14:19, 2 July 2020 (UTC)
Sorry, I meant industrial=factory. I agree that landuse=factory isn't good. What I meant to say is that the two food values should be replaced by industrial=factory and product=food. --Adamant1 (talk) 06:11, 22 August 2020 (UTC)

Feature vs. landuse

Many of the proposed values on this page (undiscussed and rarely used in many instances), go beyond "landuse" in their specificity. They seem to be intended to define features. As industrial=* is intended as a subkey for landuse=industrial, they should be landuse specific. Features like an aluminium smelter, a bakery, brewery, brickyard, factory, grinding_mill, heating_station, ice_factory, ... should get their own feature tags, not be mixed into landuse tagging. In some cases, there is already established tagging for such features, for example factories are tagged as man_made=works. My suggestion is to deprecate most of the tags and only keep keys that make sense at the second level industrial landuse. The specific company and field of operating will be tagged as features (typically man_made=*. What do you think? --Dieterdreist (talk) 12:32, 2 September 2020 (UTC)

Can you explain "second level industrial landuse"? How do you want to organize industrial activities? While I agree with the need to fix the values and distinguish the two concepts, they often overlap. Some caution is needed. ---- Kovposch (talk) 13:57, 2 September 2020 (UTC)
There are various ways we could have second level industrial landuse, e.g. distinguishing between light industry and heavy industry would be both, consistent with the whole of the tagging system and useful.--Dieterdreist (talk) 22:23, 6 November 2020 (UTC)
What would be the cut off between light industry and heavy industry and how would someone tell which one somewhere is based on satellite photos (or any other way for that matter? Count the number of heavy goods vehicles or storage tanks on the property? Base it on how large the "facility" is? --Adamant1 (talk) 07:07, 24 April 2021 (UTC)

parallel tagging, man_made=works

Somehow people have started developing and refining the tagging of industrial sites with the intent to describe production features by using landuse tags. Actually there is already a scheme for factories, suitable for feature tagging, rather than land use: man_made=works and subtags. Continuing with landuse detailing we would be creating a duplication and parallel system and eliminate the difference between landuse as a property for the land and feature tags to map discrete features. —Dieterdreist (talk) 14:38, 24 April 2021 (UTC)

I agree with that. This tag and it's sub keys are problematic for a number of reasons. Least of which is that it's just creating an un-needed alternative to the man_made=works tagging scheme. Also, the definitions and usage of lot of the keys aren't really clear either. Really, a lot of them should not be recommended and depreciated before this gets out of hand and totally fragments the man_made=works scheme. Especially whichever ones have a clear, more widely used alternatives. There's zero reason to branch off a tag that has like thousands of uses already for something that is extremely ill defined and only has a couple of hundred uses at best. Which is how a lot of these tags are. Also, a lot of these are just pointless duplicates of each other. Which doesn't help either. --Adamant1 (talk) 02:30, 25 April 2021 (UTC)
I also agree with both of you. I had tried to deal with the ambiguous use and interpretations of the tagging, but haven't come far and have no clear way out to solve this. At that time I realized it was not easy or possible to drop tags (values of industrial) without to offend. And it wasn't entirely clear to me that man_made=works is also to use on a site and not only on a building (This is now clearly stated at the wiki page). First I started with sorting values to get an overview and structure. Though a determination is needed what is to be described by the different taggings. In the meantime, reducing the number of tags/values for industrial is not a bad idea, especially for those who are hardly used and those where there is an distinct labeling with man_made=works + product. --Chris2map (talk) 08:01, 25 April 2021 (UTC)
So far I've dealt with industrial=factory‎‎, industrial=machine shop‎‎, industrial=rice mill‎, industrial=furniture‎‎, industrial=steelmaking‎, industrial=brewery‎, industrial=food industry‎‎, and industrial=food processing‎. I'm still going through the other ones, but if there's any other's that should dealt with feel free to throw them out there. A few like industrial=shipyard and industrial=warehouse really need to be resolved to, but I'm not sure how. Especially industrial=shipyard. Plus, there's some that have a lot of uses but are still problematic. I'm not sure how to handle those either. --Adamant1 (talk) 10:32, 1 May 2021 (UTC)
It's not a good idea start destroying documentation on used tags before there's a clear description what should be used instead. Example industrial=factory rtfm Rtfm (talk) 10:42, 1 May 2021 (UTC)
I've told you like five times now that man_made=works can (and should) be used instead of industrial=factory. Like I asked you on your talk page, what's not clear about "The term works is used to denote an industrial production plant, also known as a factory" in the man_made=works article? --Adamant1 (talk) 11:16, 1 May 2021 (UTC)
I had an argument with Adamant1 about the deprecation of industrial=sawmill (see history and talk page) and he asked me to share my opinion here. The parallel system you talk about has existed for many years. I've always had a feeling that most mappers consider man_made=works a somewhat obsolete tag that made sense in early OSM days but nobody really wants or needs anymore, similar to abutters=*. There are now more fine-grained tagging schemes based on building=* and its subtags for buildings and landuse=industrial and its subtags for the areas. I mainly use man_made=works for industrial constructions that are not buildings, or as an additional tag (on landuse or building) that may not be necessary but does no harm either. According to taginfo, there are 882K landuse=industrial and 151K man_made=works. The latter number is small in comparison, but still huge as an absolute number. That surprises me, because that tag doesn't seem that abundant in my country. I guess that many of those 151K come from imports. Such numbers also vary a lot with editor and renderer support. A small change in an editor configuration can boost or lower the usage count quickly. Long story short: All of these tags are widely used, and partly for the same things. We may or may not like it, but that's how it is. We can now argue which tag we prefer for which cases, but it simply doesn't matter in this context. Feature pages in the wiki should document current usage. Not how we want the tags to be used, but how they have been used so far. To target future use, you need at least a proposal, and even a few dozens of approval votes for a proposal can hardly justify documentation changes on tags that have been used by thousands of mappers. The few participants of this thread, even if they all agree, have even less so a right to deprecate tags with thousands of instances. If you dislike a certain tag, leave a comment on the respective talk page, and feel free to mention on the feature page that there's an alternative approach how to map it, but don't try to change existing standards, let alone deprecate tags with thousands of instances. --Fkv (talk) 04:35, 18 September 2021 (UTC)


I am against the removal of industrial=factory. It has been used 8028 times and it's the second most popular value. Industrial=factory is not the the as man_made=works! The other one is used to indicate that there is an active factory. The first one is detailing landuse=industrial, that in this area there are OR WERE factories. There doesn't have to be an acitve factory - if it was closed or abandoned, the tag is still landuse=industrial + industrial=factory but we can remove man_made=works. Moreover, one landuse=industrial + industrial=factory can be used on area with many factories. So industrial=factory doesn't say "there is one factory here", but "This industrial area is covered with factories". Similarly to landuse=residential + residential=apartments - if no one lives in such an area and all the buildings are abandoned, they are still building=apartments and the landuse is still landuse=residential + residential=apartments. The same with building=retail + shop=* - if the shop was closed, the building is still building=retail. Plese restore industrial=factory. (Other changes look ok for me) maro21 14:43, 1 May 2021 (UTC)

Maybe I'd agree with you if the tag was industrial=factories, instead of singular "factory" or factories were a type of landuse in the first place. I think your stretching how many levels down in a tagging we can go though. There's also a factory tag with 730 uses. The whole thing gets rather convoluted, abstract, and worthless the further down you go with it. That can't be said for landuse=residential + residential=apartments because it's plural and pretty much ends there. There's like 100 uses of the apartments tag, but it's mostly confined to the numbers of apartments.
Also, I'd say your stretching it by saying that a place that no longer contains factories should continue being tagged as landuse=industrial + industrial=factory. Except for extremely rare exceptions we don't map things that don't exist anymore and an empty field where there use to be a factory is just an empty field. Otherwise, the definition of "You can describe the type of industry or type of industrial object using the tag" wouldn't work, because what object or type of industry are you describing then? Also, are factories a type of industry? Can you really map an object with a landuse tag? Last I checked you can't. Which is the main reason man_made=works just makes more sense. Factories are physical objects, not abstract landuse concepts. More so because the tag isn't even for tagging "factories" it's for tagging "a factory." --Adamant1 (talk) 15:14, 1 May 2021 (UTC)
BTW, if you want a perfect example of what I'm talking about, feel free to look at the factory keys article which was created by RTFM and is just a duplication of the product tag because supposedly factories aren't products or some nonsense. The ways in which other tags can be duplicated because "whatever isn't whatever" even though they are essentially tagging the same exact thing is pretty much endless. Even the industrial=factory tag's description says it's for tagging tag "a Factory" and that it's only "sometimes used with landuse=industrial" tag. So there's literally no difference between it and the man_made=works tag. --Adamant1 (talk) 01:17, 2 May 2021 (UTC)