Can I just complain for a second?

First, I love City Strides. I have a lot of fun mapping my runs on here.

I’ve been running and updating my city’s map on Open Street Map.

I had it all mapped pretty well. With the recent map sync I would’ve gotten 100%.

Little did I know someone else updated the map after me, and many of the corrections are just wrong. For example some streets are private property behind fences. There is no way for me to run them without obvious trespassing.

It’s very aggravating, especially because I just fixed many of them after having been to the locations in person.

That is all.

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Yeah, it’s a big pain when people make bad edits. It’s the reason that large organizations who can afford it will have a large process to double check OSM changes before accepting them into their own infrastructure.

It probably stings a little bit more because there’s the ~month delay between updates from OSM. I’d love to be able to trim that down a bit.

I’m honestly a bit surprised that OSM survives/functions at all given how free their editing process is. It says a lot about the people who dedicate their time moderating things.


While hovering over the area of bad edits in the OSM web viewer, you can see in the lower part of the interface a part that says “Edits by…” that way you may be able to track down the user who made the bad edits and send them a friendly, constructive message. I’ve been chastised in the past on OSM for making CityStrides-focused edits that screwed up something else (I redrew part of an unmaintained track road that was part of a larger, hundreds of kilometers long hiking route way relation!). It helped me learn OSM editing etiquette and it could help that user too. Best of luck.


I understand your woes and was going to post a very similar rant. My hometown was the first city I completed and I cleaned up every OSM issue to make it perfect for the next people who run it. After CityStrides pulled in the latest OSM update this week, I dropped to 96% with 13 incomplete streets.

The streets are all non-existent ones that are right of ways that were laid out a long time ago, but never actually built. All of the ones added are parts of people’s property, which “could” be converted to streets, if the town ever chose to do so. A person who is part of a group that updates OSM as a hobby put all of these ROWs in, as he saw them on the town’s GIS data and thought he was doing a good thing.

I messaged him through OSM to explain the situation with them and that I had actually been on every street in the town on foot and that what OSM showed prior to his edits was perfect. It turned into him quoting OSM Wiki about ROWs, versus the reality of them actually being part of private properly until they are used by the town. I realized that it wasn’t worth trying to convince him, so for now I just went through an marked all of his additions as private until I figure out how they should really be handled.

There is no actual tag for ROW, so he drew them as either residential streets or paths depending on what he thought he saw in the satellite imagery. He labeled the description as Municipal ROW, but that tag isn’t actually used for anything as far as I can tell.


I have no experience with these ROWs (and am not 100% sure I understand the concept), but OSM follows what’s on the ground. When it comes to proposed streets, it is explicitly stated you can delete proposed ones if there are no current actual plans to build the proposed street. If there are actual plans (e.g., they’re aiming to build something by 2025), but they are not currently executed yet, use highway=proposed. If they are in the process of building them, use highway=construction.

If there are indeed paths already in place, but they are just coincidentally overlapping with this ROW and they are part of the private owner’s land, then I would just keep them as private. Perhaps also map gates/fences if present. Definitely not as residential road, perhaps service or something more specific. If he added “Municipal ROW” as the name=* tag (I guess he would have to for it to show in CS?), then that is also incorrect, since it is not the name. Might be a better fit in the description or the note(s) tag of the way.

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