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Delete this page.

I suggest to delete this page. All information is included in sidewalk=*. There is no need for double pages. --Rudolf 13:06, 20 July 2012 (BST)

suggest to merge these pages on sidewalk=* ==dr&mx 20:51, 25 July 2012 (BST)
Already done. --Rudolf 11:16, 26 July 2012 (BST)
I'll cleanup RU:* pages --dr&mx 19:11, 26 July 2012 (BST)
Thanks. --Rudolf 21:50, 26 July 2012 (BST)

Undo deletion

I've undone your deletion of the Sidewalk page. Some other contributors tried in the past to separate the concept description (e.g. "how to map" and the key pages. See e.g. Highways which is different from Key:highway or Barriers and Key:barrier. So please do not delete that job done on several places or merge the concept and tag pages everywhere. --Pieren 11:40, 6 August 2012 (BST)

I found your concept at several main keys, especially for the keys in Map features, but I didn't find this concept for subkeys such as track_type=, shelter_type=, shower=, mattress=, reservation= and many others. sidewalk=* is a subkey for highway=*. I don't see any sense to use two different pages for subkeys, while one page includes all the information.
BTW, why don't you declare your doing in the history? Why don't you contribute on the talk-page? I will move this discussion to Talk:Sidewalk.
I still recommend to delete this page. --Rudolf 13:21, 6 August 2012 (BST)
It's not 'my concept' or something I did myself. It has been done by others. I don't know if the idea is good or not, I'm just saying this split into 2 pages, one for concept/one for tag, exists in other places in the wiki )(I pointed some examples above). But as you said, it is not done everywhere. What I don't like is that the work is not completed - at least - for the main keys. But it started. And now, you come and propose to delete one of them. Either you merge/delete all of them or we continue with this concept. I don't care myself but it shall be consistent. --Pieren 15:27, 6 August 2012 (BST)
The concept is okay for main keys, as said above. IMHO sidewalk=* is no main key, but a subkey to highway. You haven't pointed examples for subkeys. I also don't find any examples for subkeys. So, what is the problem to delete a unnecessary page of a subkey, when there is no common concept for subkeys? --Rudolf 16:19, 6 August 2012 (BST)
I have just added a features infobox to the page. Features pages are generally used to describe features that are complex enough to require an overview, and it is my view that sidewalks are indeed complex enough to benefit from a features page and it was a oversight on my part not to have added an infobox already. Personally I would recommend trimming the sidewalk key page back a bit and then ensuring that this page covers the whole subject well. As people get into more and more detailed mapping I suspect that this subject will become more used. To be clear, features pages are not matched one-to-one with keys, they are often used to cover cross-cutting themes that go across multiple keys. Junctions, Health and Historic are all good examples. I would however suggest that we move this page to 'Sidewalks' for consistency with most otehr feature pages which use the plural. PeterIto 16:30, 6 August 2012 (BST)

I have now done a bunch of work on this article and on sidewalk=*. I hope that it now makes more sense to keep the two articles. Personally I think this article would now benefit from some more details on how to tag the more detailed approach. For example, how is one meant to use the kerb tag? There is precious little detail about it on this article or on its own page. PeterIto 22:29, 6 August 2012 (BST)

Good work. What do you think about the double chapters How to map and Presentation? I recommend to avoid duplications. --Rudolf 07:35, 7 August 2012 (BST)
Thanks. Personally I think it makes sense to keep the discussion about tagging separate from a discussion of the services available to view the date when there are many such services, however I agree that they could be merged in this case where there are less. If however four separate services to show the data emerge then a separate section probably makes sense. I am going to be away from the internet for a while now, so feel free to make changes as you see fit. PeterIto

Separated from the road by some form of barrier?

I suggest to use sidewalk=* only for sidewalks seperated from the carriageway by a curb or gutter. If there is a wider barrier in form of a road verge (lawn, bushes ...) I suggest to tag the sidewalk seperatly as highway=footway with footway=sidewalk. --Rudolf 06:15, 9 August 2012 (BST)

If the barrier is not easily passable or if the gap is irregularly shaped or unusually wide, then there are good arguments for mapping the sidewalk as separate way (even though the problem of connecting it with the road is still not reliably solved). But a bit of grass hardly makes any difference for a pedestrian's ability to cross the highway, or any other aspect of using the sidewalk, so I would not necessarily consider this a reason to change to a different mapping style. --Tordanik 09:04, 9 August 2012 (BST)
My suggestion has the intention to find a proper rule for the mapping of sidewalks. What is your suggestion for a explicit mapping howto? --Rudolf 08:42, 17 August 2012 (BST)
My personal opinion at the moment is that any sidewalk which runs mostly parallel to the highway itself and is considered a part of it (e.g. for naming) is probably best mapped as a tag on the way - using either Key:sidewalk or maybe something more advanced along the line of Lanes in the future.
However, it may be best to wait until renderers and routers actually support sidewalks intelligently (at least on an experimental level), then look at what works for them and what doesn't, and use that knowledge to define mapping rules. The main objection to sidewalks-as-a-way is that it may just not be realistically possible for applications to establish the semantic connection with the main highway. If that assumption is accurate, it would not be a good idea to standardize on your suggested rule. After all, data that is not usable by applications is just not useful, even if it conforms to a rule in the wiki. --Tordanik 19:47, 17 August 2012 (BST)

Suggestion:Change orientation from left/right to North/South/East/West. Suggestion negated.

I don't like the left/right/both/none concept.

Reasoning: While editing it is sometimes necessary to

- reverse direction (e.g. to combine roads with the same attributes)

- change or create oneway streets


With North/South/East/West/both/none I think we would be better off as it is always right. Does anyone agree/disagree? Please state your case!

Editors such as JOSM already handle direction-dependent tags quite well when reversing or combining ways, so I don't really see the problem. With North/South/East/West, even something as simple as moving a node could flip the sidewalks, a source of errors which no editor is currently aware of. The N/S/E/W solution also has the disadvantage of being potentially ambiguous, especially after combining roads, and would force additional splits for winding roads. --Tordanik 18:57, 27 June 2013 (UTC)
Thank you for your knowledge. I'll drop the suggestion. Can it be deleted?
No need. On talk pages that get too long, we sometimes introduce "archives" and move old questions there. But this page's length is still quite acceptable I think. --Tordanik 20:00, 28 June 2013 (UTC)

Sidewalks in roads with cycleways

In roads without cycleways, it is well established to mention sidewalk=both or sidewalk=left or sidewalk=right with the description of the carriageway.

If there are one or two cycleways in the street, recorded as separate lines, up to now everybody has mentioned the sidewalks as integral parts of these cycleways by the tags highway=cycleway + segregation=yes. Some people even tag highway=path + bicycle=designated, till lately hiding the cycleways from some renderers this way.

I consider it much more logical, and also have started to tag this way, to call sidewalks also sidewalks, if they are situated beside cycletracks.

For the classical street design "sidewalk – cycletrack – parking – carriageway – parking – cycletrack – sidewalk", this can be:

(for cycleways, the renderers detect oneway=yes better than oneway:bicycle=yes)

If there is a unilateral bidirectional cyleway, the nominal direction of both, carriageway and cycleway, should be that they have the other part of the road on their left side. If the division of space is "sidewalk – carriageway – cycletrack – sidewalk", the tagging would be:

(If both lines have the same formal direction instead, one of both lines has sidewalk=left.)

This way of tagging is almost necessary, if the widths are recorded:

For offroad ways that clearly consist of a cycleway and a footway, highway=path for a long time was almostwrong and still makes it more complicated than necessary. And "sidewalk" is not a good style, especially if the footway is wider than the cycleway. Then I'd prefer highway=cycleway + footway=left OR right. As most offroad cycleways are allowed for pedestrians, too, but many paths forbidden or technically inappropriate for cycling, well cyclable ways should be presented as cycleways by the renderers.--Ulamm (talk) 14:35, 30 July 2014 (UTC)

Recently, MAPNIK renderers have begun to understand highway=path + access-tags, but that tagging is more complicated and doesn't show the relative positions of foot- and cycleways drawn as one common line.--Ulamm (talk) 22:14, 30 September 2014 (UTC)

Usage of sidewalk on highway=footway/cycleway/path

I removed the following sentence from Tag:highway=cycleway which may need some more discussion.

"It is also possible to use sidewalk=right/*=left to indicate which side of the segregated path pedestrians should walk on (where right/left is relative to the way's direction). "

The reason for the removal is: It conflicts with the description on this page of where to use sidewalk=*. It says that sidewalk=* is not needed on highway=footway/cycleway/path/....

The (most) common usage of sidewalk=* is, so far as I know, the usage on highways different from cycleways. At the moment according to taginfo sidewalk=* is used around 500,000 times, while it is used 3,966 times on highway=cycleway (which includes 2,090 times sidewalk=none). There is already a proposed tag footway=sidewalk to map such infrastructure in that context.--U715371 (talk) 01:07, 5 January 2015 (UTC)

"It is possible …" is an information. The sentence deleted by User:U715371 is a true information. Deletion of true informations that are not far from the subject is vandalism.
About the subject itself see Talk:Tag:highway=cycleway!--Ulamm (talk) 18:03, 5 January 2015 (UTC)

Sidewalk= no / =none

Anyone know the difference between sidewalk=no and sidewalk=none ?-- pmailkeey 2016:4:5

They mean the same thing. Which one is better depends on whom you ask. Personally, I prefer "no", because of the symmetry with "yes" and because almost all other keys use "no" rather than "none". --Tordanik 09:48, 6 April 2016 (UTC)

Sidelwalk or not - width limits

I was just wondering when to consider a sidewal being a sidewalk and not just a wider kerb that would be dangerous to walk along. As an example consider this Mapillary image. The width is 4 paving stones plus the kerb stone. Is this wide enough to qualify? In my view not as sidewalks should be safe to walk on. Also you would not be able to use a pram/stoller on this one.

What are your thoughts? --ConsEbt (talk) 09:32, 15 September 2016 (UTC)

Unimproved sidewalks

What is the proper way to indicate that there is grass on the side of the road that is legally open to pedestrians in the case that there is no paved sidewalk? Legally speaking, I believe some US states call this a "sidewalk," while others do not, but for the routing of timid pedestrians that don't mind walking in grass, this is relevant data, since they might prefer a grassy area than being forced to walk in the roadway itself. And for people who prefer walking on pavement, the existence of a grassy "sidewalk" might limit where they are legally allowed to walk. Germyb (talk) 18:52, 15 September 2017 (UTC)

Actually, I might be wrong about whether these laws classify such grassy areas as "sidewalks." Some people on the internet think they do, but I'm having trouble finding significant court cases that support this view. Germyb (talk) 04:33, 17 September 2017 (UTC)
If we consider this a sidewalk, then sidewalk:left:surface=grass would probably be the best tagging choice. It's not something I would call a sidewalk, nor something I would consider a reasonable quality of pedestrian infrastructure, but I can accept that there may be cultural differences at play. --Tordanik 10:05, 18 September 2017 (UTC)
Yes, iff that is really considered sidewalk than sidewalk:left:surface=grass would be a good idea Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 15:43, 10 November 2017 (UTC)

Regional variations

Can somebody give an example of country/city where "Sidewalk as refinement to a highway" is clearly dominating? Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 15:44, 10 November 2017 (UTC)

This will be hard to show, because it is the lazy way of mapping sidewalks. Why that? Most often, nothing needs to be done at all: They are kind of implied, most roads have them, and mostly on both sides too. No need to clutter the map any more than it is already. Only when someone starts to care about pedestrian routing, e.g. exceptions will be tagged. In my home-town this has been practice for almost ten years now. Pedestrian routing works very good. That said, I recently doubled the number of sidewalk tags there, mostly on tertiary highways, as pedestrian routers nowadays avoid those if not annotated, and that did lead to big detours.
PS: Last week I asked the makers of a pedestrian router to present themselves on this Wiki here and post a list of common pitfalls in OSM data that they encounter. They came up with a short wishlist, one entry of which reads: Refinement is preferred over separate ways. Not that I was particularly surprised by the fact, yet by the importance they gave to it. --Hungerburg (talk) 12:00, 28 July 2020 (UTC)


I would like to revamp this page, by including information about the new approved sidewalk/crossing tagging scheme: Tag:footway=sidewalk, Tag:footway=crossing, Proposed features/Sidewalk as separate way. The existing information would be moved down and marked as deprecated to keep information that this tagging can currently still be found in OSM data.

--Mashin (talk) 23:20, 10 July 2020 (UTC)

See - it is already documented Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 07:40, 11 July 2020 (UTC)
Yes, but it is hidden on the bottom and the template on the right also shows old info. I would like to move it to the top and mark the rest as old version of tagging so new users are not confused and are pointed to the right information. --Mashin (talk) 17:05, 11 July 2020 (UTC)
Both are correct, sidewalk tag is not deprecated, unwanted or old in meaning "worse". Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 22:03, 11 July 2020 (UTC)
No one is saying wrong, just simply stating that the community has other preference based on how it voted. That is not going to change anything about this way of tagging. --Mashin (talk) 19:06, 12 July 2020 (UTC)
"deprecated" - means undesirable/wrong Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 07:40, 13 July 2020 (UTC)
Simply means that it's been superseded. --Mashin (talk) 08:57, 15 July 2020 (UTC)
@Mashin, there are two methods for sidewalk tagging. Different regions and cities have different preferences which schema to use. In some cases a mix is in use. A page on the wiki should describe what's used in the database, not what one or two authors prefer to see being used.
It is true that the separate way method is more down on the bottom of the page. However, it is unavoidable to have one of the two method being below the other in a text. If you want to improve this page, please outline that there are two competing schemes directly below the heading "How to map". After explaining the two schemes, you can explain how mappers can choose which schema to use (rules for this decision are: what is used where you edit, what does the community prefer in that region).
I advise not to rely too much on Proposed features/Sidewalk as separate way. The voting was 9 years ago and ended with 20 votes in favour, 9 agains and 3 abstainations. Under [proposal rules], this proposal would be considered as rejected (missed 3/4 majority). --Nakaner (talk) 08:02, 13 July 2020 (UTC)
I agree, and wiki describes what is used. The thing I want to change, is to move the other proposal on a visible place, because community agreed on that. If it is unavoidable to have one on the bottom then it should be no problem to simply move the unapproved one there.
I don't think the most people agree that you can start ignoring old approved proposals. There are many that are older than this one. Different times, different number of users. Important is, that it passed the rules for voting that were valid then. --Mashin (talk) 03:06, 14 July 2020 (UTC)
9-year old proposal is far less important that large scale use and continued acceptance/support/use of a tagging scheme. Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 08:39, 14 July 2020 (UTC)
Accepted proposal is very important, because it directly expresses the will of the community. That the other scheme is still present in the data has no influence on this. Obviously, it will be highlighted that some regions or communities still prefer using the alternative way of tagging and mappers should discuss with locals first. Those regions can be named in some form of table. --Mashin (talk) 08:57, 15 July 2020 (UTC)
@Mashin, by writing "the other scheme is stil present in the data" you imply that it is in the data because it was in use, don't you? If this is what you want to express, I kindly ask you to back your claims with research in the OSM data and to show proofs that the usage of sidewalk=* comes from old edits in the past and that the tag is rarely added nowadays. --Nakaner (talk) 09:29, 15 July 2020 (UTC)
You are just making your own straw man. I have no obligation to prove you anything. By accepting the proposal, community said that we should map sidewalks as separate ways. It doesn't say that other mapping system should coexist or be used or be treated equally. If community wanted the other system to be recommended or used it would be voted on and accepted.
So again, I just want to move the info about the accepted proposal up so it's more visible. --Mashin (talk) 23:27, 16 July 2020 (UTC)
It also have not deprecated other method. Many things in OSM can be mapped in various ways Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 08:22, 17 July 2020 (UTC)
It deprecated the other method as the main method. No one said that you can not use the other one or that that data should not exit in the database. --Mashin (talk) 16:44, 19 July 2020 (UTC)
Deprecation of tagging method means that such tagging should not be used and should be removed from database Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 07:16, 20 July 2020 (UTC)
I don't think that it means to be removed, if that is what keeps bothering you. As far as I know in all cases any automated edits are banned. It is nicely, at least in my opinion, explained in the first two sentences of Deprecated_features.
So just to implement what I read here and elsewhere, I would then like to do following: Mark separate ways proposal as recommended primary way of tagging sidewalks. Tagging on the roads would be marked as additional/extended way of tagging that provides useful information. There would be a warning that some users or areas prefer tagging that way with perhaps a table where those would be listed.
I hope I got all the comments. --Mashin (talk) 03:48, 22 July 2020 (UTC)
Reading this thread, I summarize, you indeed have got all the comments: the article is fine as is. No need to change it. --Hungerburg (talk) 19:27, 22 July 2020 (UTC)
Since there are no more relevant concerns to address I would then go ahead and update the page. --Mashin (talk) 00:31, 24 July 2020 (UTC)
Please note, that your proposal to update this article here received no voice in support, but lots to the opposite. Any changes to the article in this direction therefore are to be considered unapproved by the community. --Hungerburg (talk) 08:55, 24 July 2020 (UTC)
You can not forbid someone to do any changes just because you don't like something. I addressed all the points of concern and modify my proposed edits accordingly. --Mashin (talk) 20:57, 26 July 2020 (UTC)
But we can forbid making edits that would be misleading Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 22:09, 26 July 2020 (UTC)
Objectively, none of that is misleading. It is just restating of what the community had said with their vote. --Mashin (talk) 01:32, 27 July 2020 (UTC)
According to Approval_status both "Approved" and "De facto" are so called "Green" values, that have been accepted and supported by the community.
Yes that says that it's been used, but as before that not a ground to have it as a main recommended way of tagging. Particularly if the separate way tagging at least the same and it has been approved by the community. --Mashin (talk) 23:28, 29 July 2020 (UTC)
Highway=footway is not approved either, will that mean, that it has do be dropped in favour of "path"?--Hungerburg (talk) 10:49, 30 July 2020 (UTC)

History Section

In the early days of openstreetmap, there was no specific method to map sidewalks. Actually, there was no method, to map ways for pedestrian use at all. This deficiency got remedied by popular usage of the highway=footway tag. Its wiki article dates back to January 2008. There was still no method to specifically map sidewalks then, though footways sometimes got used to this effect, especially, where they were physically distinct features on ground.

Beginning some time in 2008, people started annotating streets with sidewalk=* tags. Especially so, where sidewalks were perceived to be physically indistinct features on ground, thereby following the "One feature, one OSM element" good practice principle. Again by popular usage, this "refinement of the highway" approach became a first method, to specifically have that information in the openstreetmap database.

Continued extensive mapping of separate footways alongside of roads and streets, in 2011 prompted the "refinement of the footway" approach, by annotating such ways with a footway=sidewalk key. Although conceptually quite different, from the point of view of the objective, this tool made both methods informationally roughly equivalent, so historically it became known as the "separate way" approach of mapping sidewalks. --Hungerburg (talk) 10:07, 30 July 2020 (UTC)

If I may, I'd like to place above paragraphs at the bottom of the article or perhaps above the regional variations section. It might help users understand, why there are two approaches to much the same.--Hungerburg (talk) 10:49, 30 July 2020 (UTC)
Feel free to add this! <ref>source</ref> can be added in case where there is some link that proves some nonobvious claims Mateusz Konieczny (talk) 12:18, 30 July 2020 (UTC)
Thank you for the heads up, substantial reading of proposals, changelogs and so on went into this short recap. Two references provided for stuff that might seem controversial to some. --Hungerburg (talk) 18:44, 30 July 2020 (UTC)