Confusion about button_operated for traffic signals

At it says that button press requests the green light where tells that it’s “used to indicate that some functionality may be (or needs to be) activated by pressing a button.”

Problem for me is that here (Germany/Berlin) we have traffic signals with button that only requests an acoustic signal for visually impaired, not the green light.
Is button_operated=yes valid in this case?

We also have these buttons here (Germany/Bavaria). In my opinion, using a different key than button_operated for them would be desirable so that we can clearly distinguish them.

I’m not aware of an existing solution, so I guess you would have to invent a new tag – something like



Just curious, I’m quite new, and am amazed at the detail on OSM… Is there also an object for button_operated crosswalk signal (lights)? The purpose is to warn motorists, via flashing yellow lights, that someone is about to cross. These have started popping up near me (Keller, TX), and I never even thought to look for them on OSM. Maybe I have a new mission. :slight_smile:

Thank you in advance.

Sincerely, Eric

Thanks for your reply.
So you propose that button_operated=yes strictly refers to “needs to be pressed for green light” an everything else is a “no?”

Inventing a new tag feels more complicated to me, just a low level user I am. :slight_smile: I usualy just use and prefer StreetComplete to edit things being outside in the streets.

(Argh, why did I miss the german user section …)

I’m glad you didn’t, your question helped me!


That’s my interpretation. I haven’t found anything authoritative on the topic, mind you.

Inventing new tags doesn’t have to be a big deal, you’re allowed to just start using them. :slight_smile: I understand that this doesn’t really work with apps that come with a built-in set of tasks, though.

The wiki page for Key:crossing has a tag flashing_lights=button for button-activated flashing lights. Does that sound right?

button_operated=yes can be used for all kind of button operated things, as described, for example elevator.

In combination with ! a key:crossing 2.4 Traffic signals describes traffic_signals

In text the most common use is mentioned

Which traffic_signals are there? also, sound, vibration.

yes, says, that all kinds of traffic_signals are button_operated, this include also sound and vibration.

Only the green light should/could be, traffic_signals:traffic_lights:button_operated=yes. (traffic_lights ?)
As may things which are developed in OSM , written with the big group of use in mind.
The little groups must be fit in later.

button_operated=traffic_lights, short tag, could mean only lights is operated wit a button.
But when you have both, the : method is better to use.

Under construction:
I am working on a JOSM style to control de tags, now you have to select the node/way, then see the list, read all and understand it.

A symbol, (why, we need maps) In a eye blink you can understand, what is ment. The legend is important, zoom in and see on a level we do not normally draw, what the symbol mean.

flashing_lights=yes/no/always/button/sensor needs the upper right corner.

“else” means, that there is a value, or a wrong written value, what is there, get own symbol in the style.
Here the level, the symbol image jumps to a symbol image with text legend.

And all depends how it is drawn in. To see it, you must visualise it. Otherwise you can not control it.

Image, 25 cm aerial image (pixel have more deviation) and on this spot official measured in Government data, which we can use for OSM, to draw the lines on it’s place.

The zebra is only that part where the zebra is (white) and the crossing:island=yes/no (yes red) is on the spot where you can stand still.

When you think further, there is even the possibility to use :conditional with yes @ (times) at a button_operated.

Need that all to be visualised.

There are a lot of combinations!

Running out of time :wink:

Yes it does. Thank you!

Argh, I didn’t receive a notification about more activity here! Sorry for the delay, I thought the discussion is dead. I have to check my settings again.

Thanks a lot for your answers!

@Tordanik and @Allroads: If I understand you two correct, you have opposing views on that topic: “button only for light” vs “one for all”. But both propose inventing new tags to better reflect the hard reality.

To be honest, the “all for one” solution looks like the most convenient at the moment. But for consistency with the already tagged stuff at my place I guess I should ask the german crowd.
But just now I’ve spend some more hours rereading your answers, the docs and the map, need a rest.

@EricJRW Glad you got help too! :slight_smile: