Talk:Proposed features/Pedestrian lane

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Discussion on the tagging mailing list


We are not ready yet

First of all, I think the discussion in the Tagging list has not come to any meaningful conclusion.

There are number of aspects that need to be addressed before we can even formulate a proposal.

Here are some points that have not been addressed in the discussion on the Tagging list.

--voschix (talk) 23:02, 1 November 2019 (UTC)

I felt the need to write a proposal in order that this wasn't yet another discussion that ended without a result. And i don't think that it's too early for a proposal, see my replies below.
By the way, i took the liberty to copy your signature to each section for the sake of clarity. --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 19:02, 2 November 2019 (UTC)

Different countries - different rules

In my country (Italy) we do have cycle lanes (called "pista ciclabile su corsia riservata in carregiata") which are separated by a white line from the motorised traffic. This white lane is (in theory) "invalicabile", i.e. it is an offence to cross it with any vehicle. It means no car should enter the cycle lane and no bicycle should invade the main carriageway. The use of cycle lanes is mandatory for cyclists where they exist.

Much less frequent are pure foot lanes, they look similar, but are marked with pedestrian symbol and the white continuous line. I do not know the legal situation for these, to be honest. This is an example (with no markings visible because of the incorrectly parked cars):

Then we have mixed and segregated foot-cycle lanes.

They are the equivalent of the separate foot-cycle ways.

The same rules apply as for the separate foot-cycle ways.

All of these have one thing in common: all these lanes are off-limits for motorised traffic.

This seems in direct contrast to the rules for the Swiss approach for pedestrian lanes.

The Swiss pedestrian lanes seem to be more a pedestrian equivalent of the German Schutzstreifen (, which are much "weaker" (on paper) than the Italian cycle lanes.

--voschix (talk) 23:02, 1 November 2019 (UTC)

I don't think that this is a problem. "Different countries – different rules" is also true for other traffic-related features, for example cycle paths (highway=cycleway): in some countries, pedestrians are allowed to use a cycle paths, in other countries, they aren't. But we're still tagging them the same everywhere. My suggestion is to collect the legal informations in a table on the wiki (similar to OSM_tags_for_routing/Access-Restrictions) and maybe later add them as defaults to boundary=administrative relations. --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 19:02, 2 November 2019 (UTC)

Combined foot-cycle lanes

I see the need for a tagging approach that covers also mixed foot-cycle lanes

Just a couple of examples:

Contraflow mixed combined foot-cycleway:

Two combined foot-cycle lanes with one-way restriction for bicycles

Segregated contraflow foot-cycle lane with one-way restriction for bicycles

--voschix (talk) 23:02, 1 November 2019 (UTC)

It seems that there is already a tag combination for shared foot and cycle–lanes: cycleway=lane + cycleway:foot=designated, see Key:cycleway#Supplementary_details. --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 19:02, 2 November 2019 (UTC)
@Voschix:: I first thought that this tagging were quite established, because there are 2,641 uses of the most used variant cycleway:right:foot=designated. However, i've just realised that only 21 of it are cycleway:right:foot=designated + cycleway:right=lane combinations (1,954 are cycleway:right:foot=designated and cycleway:right=track, besides 2,597 of all 2,641 uses of cycleway:right:foot=designated are from Germany).
I've never came across a shared foot and cycle–lane. Are they common in Italy? Do pedestrians have priority over cyclists? If they are more pedestrian lanes than cycle lanes, it would probably make sense to tag them as a sub-type of pedestrian lane (e.g. pedestrian_lane=right + pedestrian_lane:right=shared). Otherwise a separate key (e.g. foot_cycle_lane=*) would likely be better. --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 16:53, 10 November 2019 (UTC)

Access to foot or cycle lanes

We need a way to distinguish between the Italian lanes that are off-limits for all motorized traffic and the German Schutzstreifen or the Swiss pedestrian lanes on which cars allowed to stop or to make way for oncoming traffic

--voschix (talk) 23:02, 1 November 2019 (UTC)

If a country only has one type of pedestrian lanes, that distinction doesn't have to be made while mapping, see my reply in the section #Different countries - different rules above. The distinction may only have to be made if a country features different types of pedestrian lanes: some that vehicles are allowed to use and others that they aren't allowed to use. But that distinction could also be made later. (For example, in Switzerland, motor vehicles are allowed to use a cycle lane (if they don't endanger cyclists) if the lane is marked with an interrupted line; if the line is continuous, they aren't allowed to cross it. But it seems that we're not making that distinction yet.) --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 19:02, 2 November 2019 (UTC)

Which method to use?

What is already used. We use on road OSM way cycleway=lane cycleway:right=lane cycleway:left=lane Then it is pedestrian=lane of footway=lane with :right or :left.

Bicycle that use a busway, bicycle symbol and BUS text on roadlane, use then Tag:cycleway=share_busway So it would be logic that then pedestrian=share_cycleway is used.

Not a new key but a value. Stick to the used method.

More important is the choice of the method used, then which name for a key or value. More important to use a new value, then a new key. The hierarchy in the decision table. --AllroadsNL (talk) 12:03, 2 November 2019 (UTC)

Bicycle and pedestrian road infrastructures are already mapped using differend tagging schemes:
  • cycleway=lane/cycleway:right=lane/cycleway:left=lane for cycle lanes
  • cycleway=track/cycleway:right=track/cycleway:left=track for cycle paths
  • sidewalk=both/sidewalk=right/sidewalk=left for foot paths
For bicycle road infrastructures the value is the type, whereas for pedestrian road infrastructures the value is the side.
If we would tag pedestrian road infrastructures similar to cycleway=*, we would have to retag more than 1.5 million sidewalk=*'s. --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 19:02, 2 November 2019 (UTC)

The difference, a part of the road "the lane" and a next to the road way (footway (sidewalk), cycleway, in your list line 2 and 3 tags). The choice, only for "the lane" take the same method. This is the subject in this proposal. We talking only about lanes tagging. --AllroadsNL (talk) 01:17, 3 November 2019 (UTC)

In my opinion, pedestrian=* as a key isn't descriptive. And because cycleway:foot=designated seems to be already established for combined foot and cycle–lanes, lane were the only value of pedestrian=*. --

pedestrian is a value of highway, just like =cycleway and =footway. We use cycleway as a key, so we can use footway as a key, and also pedestrian. OSM named it pedestrian, but maybe it should be pedestrianway like footway, but it is pedestrian. So be it. Earlier I wrote "Then it is pedestrian=lane or footway=lane with :right or :left." So why not use footway=lane. Do not use pedestrian=lane. footway=lane is okay with me. I do not see the need to use pedestrian_lane. If they need to use de word "pedestrian", then it should be pedestrian=lane.

  1. Like at cycleway you can use shared_lane. This is used a lot in the Netherlands (you can drive/park/stop on it). On a highway=residential you could use footway=shared_lane, one side, footway:right=shared_lane or footway=lane, footway:right=lane.
  2. But as you mentioned "cycleway:foot=designated" this is a access tag combination for the cycleway=lane with foot, you could use footway:motor_vehicle=no or pedestrian:bicycle=designated beter footway:bicycle=designated on a highway=unclassified. (A mind "180 degree perspective")
  3. And then there is, as earlier mentioned "use then Tag:cycleway=share_busway So it would be logic that then pedestrian=share_cycleway is used" Or better footway=share_cycleway. When is it pedestrian= and when footway= on a highway= unclassified? I see a lane more as a footway.

Many possibilities, to express, no need to use a new key tag pedestrian_lane! That's my point.--AllroadsNL (talk) 17:12, 3 November 2019 (UTC)

footway=* is already used to define a footway as a sidewalk or pedestrian crossing, so it can't be reused for something else. Values are often used as keys to further describe a feature, see Any tags you like#Refinement and namespaces.
Because pedestrian is already used as a value (in highway=pedestrian), it is probably not a good idea to use it as key to mean something completely different. Besides, pedestrian doesn't exist as a key yet, therefore it were also a new key. (Actually it's not true that pedestrian=* doesn't exist as a key yet: according to Taginfo there are 1,332 uses of pedestrian=*, but it seems that it has been mistakenly used instead of foot=*.)
cycleway:foot=designated says that the cycleway is also designated for pedestrians, so it describes a shared foot and cycle–lane. --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 22:16, 4 November 2019 (UTC)

cycleway=* is also already used, still it is used as cycleway=lane on highway=unclassified (or else).

footway=* so this tag can also be used on a highway=unclassified as footway=lane. (same method) And is not used for sidewalk tagging on the highway=unclassified (or else).

sidewalk=* =yes/left/right/both on a highway=unclassified, says, that there is a sidewalk next to the lane, when used sidewalk=* then there is no need to use the footway=*,except when there is on a side (one side) a footway lane or lane for pedestrian, then it is taggged on the highway=unclassified footway:right=lane then there could be a sidewalk=left. The footway(:*=lane can be used next to the sidewalk=* tag on the main road lane. Wiki "sidewalk=separate is frequently used to indicate that sidewalk exists and is mapped as separate way" this on the highway=unclassified, on the separate way, highway=footway footway=sidewalk.

When next to the road, the sidewalk is drawn in as a new highway, you get two highway's waylines, then this wayline gets highway=footway footway=sidewalk, when this highway=footway is a crossing, then it gets footway=crossing crossing=uncontrolled for example.

This is used next to each other. And can be used next to each other. It does not overlap!

As the wiki tells us "footway = sidewalk A sidewalk alongside a street, separately mapped with highway=footway" Separately! footway=sidewalk is always a combination with highway=footway.

highway=(different value then footway), the footway= can be used. The combination is decisive!

cycleway=* in the wiki, there is a paragraph about "Cycle lanes" earlier wrote in the wiki because earlier in discussion, there are more cycleway lanes, the need to tag it.

footway=* Wiki could get a paragraph about "Pedestrian lanes" and then explained footway=lane, the same as cycleway=lane.

For me it is clear, footway=lane is the best solution. Lately I am working on a style, a part is to visualise sidewalk and crossings and much more. exampleUnder construction. This is a footway (green) with sidewalk (green perpendicular, I must make a choice between line or image visualisation) next to highway=cycleway (purple). All things considered, there is no need for a new key. --AllroadsNL (talk) 13:58, 5 November 2019 (UTC)

I got your point, but i still find pedestrian_lane=* more descriptive and straightforward than footway[:right/left]=lane. Besides, footway=both/right/left/none/no has once been used to tag sidewalks (see Key:footway#Values) and there are still 6,595 uses in the database. I fear that this could lead to confusion and therefore wrong tagging. Starting with a new key would be cleaner. --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 16:08, 10 November 2019 (UTC)

Inn Germany, too

I know at least one pedestrian lane in Germany. --Sdicke (talk) 22:41, 11 November 2019 (UTC)

@Sdicke:: Thank you, i've added Germany to the list of countries where pedestrian lanes exist. Do you happen to know how pedestrian lanes are called in Germany? --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 17:12, 12 November 2019 (UTC)


You can use it with all kinds of vehicles. In the Netherlands we use a lot cycleway=shared_lane in overpass. And you can also use cycleway:lane My point is, what you want to achieve for foot is already there for bicycle. Do not invent a new systematic (method), by making a new key, use a existing one, just change cycleway in footway. For footway and lane, you get exactly the same discussions as happend for cycleway and lane.