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Large Vehicle Proposal


This proposal adds a new tag named large_vehicles to describe how large vehicles may (or may not) access or fit into various roads, gas stations, parking lots and other amenities.


Drivers of large bulky vehicles such as cargo trucks, motorhomes, RVs, and vehicles that are towing trailers can often face difficulties when navigating unknown roads and attempting to use facilities like gas stations and parking lots. In the worst case, a large vehicle can become stuck in the wrong place because of its bulk and require towing or extraction.

Definition of Large Vehicle

A large vehicle means a land vehicle, usually motorized, that exceeds one of the following dimensions:

  • Total length (including that of trailers when towing): 10 meters (about 33 feet)
  • Width at widest point: 2.5 meters (about 8 feet)
  • Height at highest point: 2.5 meters (about 8 feet)

Note that the tags maxlength, maxwidth and maxheight may be used to complement this tag and provide more precise limits.

Vehicles included

Different from

This tag is not the same as hgv. While an hgv is a large_vehicle, the latter term includes many vehicles such as RVs, boat trailers, etc. that are not carrying goods. A small passenger car that is towing a long light trailer can qualify as a large vehicle.

Out of scope

This tag is intended to cover only physical dimensions. It does not consider vehicle weight, which can become a complex topic. Use the maxweight tag instead.

Elements applied to

This tag can be applied to the following non-exhaustive list of OSM elements:

  • Roads (highway): Apply this to the ways that are suitable or not suitable to be traveled safely and without disruption by large vehicles.
    • In general, all roads are assumed to be suitable for large vehicles if not tagged explicitly.
    • If only some sections of a road are not suitable, consider splitting the road into smaller ways and tagging only those smaller ways explicitly.
  • Parking lots: Apply this to parking lots that are suitable or not suitable for large vehicles to:
    • Enter
    • Park and remain for a while
    • Depart safely without disruption to other vehicles and users.
    • Consider breaking up a large parking lot into multiple sections if some sections have different suitability for large vehicles.
  • Gasoline stations: Apply this to gasoline stations that are suitable or not suitable for large vehicles to enter and depart safely and without disruption to other vehicles and users. If the key value is yes or preferred:
    • The gasoline station must have at least one pump that can reach and service the large vehicle
    • The path to and from that pump should also be able to traversed by a large vehicle.
    • Consider also mapping and tagging the driveways into and out of the gas station that are most suitable (or not suitable) for a large vehicle.
  • Car Washes and Truck Washes.

How to survey and tag

This tag is best placed after surveying the location in person. Ideally, the surveyor should have personal knowledge of driving large vehicles Factors that the surveyor should consider:

  • Road and lane width, compared to the length and width of large vehicles.
  • Road turns with angles of more than 90 degrees.
  • Height constraints caused by overhanging tree branches, electric cables and low bridges, compared to the height of large vehicles.

Local practice:

  • Explicit signage about large vehicles, e.g. No Trucks, No Truck Parking signs.
  • Information from facility operators about whether large vehicles may use their facilities, e.g. RV Lanes or Truck Parking.
  • Personal observation that locations and facilities are in fact being used by large vehicles.

The following factors may also be considered but are subjective:

  • Congestion caused by other vehicle traffic, on-street parking, pedestrians and bicyclists.
  • Poor visibility around corners due to buildings, vegetation or terrain.

Tagging: New key and values

Key Value Element Comment Photo TagInfo

All values

large_vehicles unknown node way area Implied if not present. It is assumed that this location or facility is suitable for large vehicles but is not verified. This value may be specified explicitly if useful for managing a surveying project.

large_vehicles no node way area Large vehicles are prohibited by rule, posted sign or local practice.

large_vehicles discouraged node way area While allowed, large vehicles are discouraged from using this location or facility due to its geography or layout.

large_vehicles yes node way area Large vehicles are allowed to use this facility, by rule, posted sign or local practice.

large_vehicles preferred node way area If multiple similar locations or facilities are present in proximity to each other, this one is preferable for large vehicles to use. Examples can include multiple alternative driveways to the same facility.