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access=private on driveways

Posted Tue 15 Oct 2019 08:10:04 PM CEST Florian Lohoff in

Just to get a glimpse on what happens when you spray access tags by feeling and make driveways to tracks or make them unusable by adding an access=private

All people navigating/routing to addresses at "Zur Hohen Wand" will end up on the parking lot of the restaurant, 600m away with a double track railway inbetween.

This is simply matching OSM addresses with the OSRM nearest call to the routable network.

I am calculating this view for some German Bundesländer:

And yes - I know ALL arguments that this can be fixed in the software e.g. routers. But it hasnt. It hasnt been fixed for 12 years. And i dont think this is a software problem. If someone says access=private noone is allowed in. Not the postal service, not friends or the school bus. You have explicitly told anyone not to go there. How could a machine decide to ignore the mappers request.


Tracks are not for everyday driving by car. So they are excluded for the normal car routing graph which is correct. Except - Someone sprays an access=permissive or something on it and suddenly its available for a car. Driveways to farmyards are NOT tracks. They are not dominantly used for agricultural purposes. The amount of traffic for living outweights by orders of magnitude. The postal services goes there, the kids go to school. Friends come and go. People drive to work. Tagging a driveway to a farm as an agricultural track makes the farm unreachable for most of todays car routing engines in their default settings.

access tags

Most commonly access=private on a highway=service with service=driveway or some random other mixture. In 10 years fighting this spraying of access tags i have only seen a single case of a valid access=private on a driveway. And that sounded more like - "You'll die if you continue here". Even as the UPS driver i'd be frightened to go in there. All others said that its "Private property" or the German version "Privatweg". I am okay with that. service=driveway says exactly that. So why do people spray "felt" access restriction on ways? It contradicts the Good Practice by only mapping what is verifiable and when there is no sign "Keep of the lawn" there is no reason to invent restriction.

Yes i know - You all have seen nice profiles or settings where you automatically convert an access=private into an access=destination, or can allow a router to use a track. But thats not what the mapper said. You are overriding the mappers decision