Industrial laundries

What’s a good tag for industrial laundries, also known as industrial washhouses? These are factory-like facilities where clothes are sorted, washed, dried, and folded on an industrial scale. Factories, hospitals, hotels, laboratories, car repair shops, and prisons make use of industrial laundries, either on the premises or contracted out to a third party. Companies that specialize in this industry call themselves uniform services, uniform cleaning services, or linen services.

Many industrial laundries are mapped in OSM as plain named buildings. The Name Suggestion Index project has had to decline multiple submissions of large uniform rental companies, because there’s no established tag for them.

I’ve been tagging them as industrial=laundry, treating it as a top-level feature tag but typically dual-tagging it with either landuse=industrial or building=industrial. I recognize that some mappers frown upon treating industrial=* as a top-level feature key. On the other hand, industrial=laundry is consistent with historic washhouses, which are being tagged as historic=laundry. What are some other options?

FWIW, the one near one of my areas of interest also has the industrial=laundry tag.

I’m not sure I’d put uniform rental in the same category though? I think they usually do stuff owned by the organisations they have contracts with.

I would agree with industrial=laundry. I haven’t treated industrial=* as top-level, but I’m not opposed to it necessarily.

The uniform rental and industrial laundry companies around here are mostly one-in-the-same, with warehouse, depot, and laundry facilities at the same location. Out of the three, laundry is the most distinct and should be the primary tag. Other tags could distinguish uniform rental from pure industrial laundry if useful.

To be clear, I was referring to a service that rents uniforms to a client and handles all the washing and delivery for them on a contractual basis. But I’m thinking of uniforms as only one of several things an industrial laundry could specialize in washing, another being linens. A laundry that serves a hospital might handle both its scrubs and its curtains.

Mapping in Silicon Valley, I’ve also encountered some facilities that serve the chip manufacturing industry by offering instrument cleaning alongside uniform laundry (for the bunny suits). That would be a case for dual-tagging with craft=cleaning perhaps.

Would shop=trade + trade=laundry work, or not “big” enough?

It’s not that the facility is too big, it’s that no one goes there to shop, not even tradespeople. You’d have to scale a tall fence or borrow a truck and uniform from one of their delivery drivers to get a look around inside.

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I do the same, there doesn’t seem to be any better way to tag a lot of businesses.

Too bad. If they don’t like it, they can propose a better tag. This is the best we currently have IMO.

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Definitely industry=laundry: my local one.

This firm CLEAN used to be headquartered near to my old flat. They also had a launderette at the front of their industrial premises, and you could drop off things for complex cleaning at the shop (feather pillows one example). I mapped the two items separately. They had a royal warrant from the Queen, so I assume they did the bed-linen for Windsor Castle as well as local hotels etc. Since then they seem to have expanded and have several sites.

Numerous industrial processes require employee clothing to be laundered regularly: when I worked in labs, the lab coats were sent off frequently. At least one of my local hospitals has an on-site laundry, but smaller ones may contract this out (although on-site ones may be run by contractors these days).