Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Dual Carriageways

When I first started editing OSM, I was mostly doing residential roads and bike trails. Eventually I worked my way to major roads. Some of them had dual carriageways. In my case these were also US/State highways. Somehow I got the two mixed up in my head and thought that mapping any dual carriageway road required relations. Since I didn't know much about relations at the time I was kind of scared to touch them. Turns out relations ARE used to describe highways however they are not required for dual carriageway roads.

Since I've recently been working on "dualizing" roads in the Kansas City area, I thought I would throw up a quick post about the process. It has probably already been done (I seem to recall a "TIGER fixup" tutorial that described the process) but here is my version.

To Start off with, let's define a dual carriageway road. There may be some difference of opinion (there usually is in OSM) but in general it is any road where the opposing streams of traffic are separated by a physical barrier. A grass median (think interstates) or a strip of trees in the middle of a boulevard are prime examples. Sometimes the barrier is just a small strip of raised pavement or bricks. Regardless, it is something that would make your car go "bump" or even cause damage if you were to try and drive through/over it.