Best practice on adding information on shade


I’m a new user of OSM and looking for guidance or best practice on the following issue.

In my neighbourhood, I’ve started adding missing playground areas to OSM. As I live in Spain, where it is very hot in summer, it is quite important to know which of the playgrounds are shaded (by trees or buildings). The current tagging of playgrounds does not offer any information related to shade. So, I’m wondering what would be the best way of adding that information.

  • introduce new tags (e.g. “Morning shade”, “Noon Shade”, “Afternoon shade”)
  • just add it as part of “Description”? (Playground receives shade from nearby buildings in the afternoon.)


the most accurate way to do it, in my opinion, would be to accurately map elements (trees, buildings, roofs, …) around and their height, so that shade in different times on the day and seasons can be calculated/rendered.
Using tags on the affected elements, there is the shade tag ( and this proposal dealing with the type of element that’s creating the shade.
You could also use conditional restrictions ( to describe times and periods.
IMHO a simple approach would be at least to use no/partial/yes

Last summer, Frederik Ramm started mapping trees in Karlsruhe for this very reason. Ideally you should also estimate the height of the tree & possibly the species (as different trees provide different shade). You can also estimate spread (the diameter of the tree canopy) as well, diameter or circumference at chest height is in general easier and often allows other parameters to be estimated.

If you look at f4map which visualises buildings mapped using the simple 3D building tags it calculates tree shadows according to the time of day. This is an example in Caceres

Equally I have no problems with introducing a tag to describe shadiness, as this is an emergent property of the trees and not that easily calculated.

Thanks for your answers. In fact, I had not realized that you can just type “shade” into the tags selection field. When you click on the dropdown it is not obvious that there are more tags, that are just not displayed.

The is pretty cool. That’s even better than I was hoping for. Thanks for the link.