Large parking areas around shopping malls.

New mapper here in the USA. I have a question about conventions for marking parking around malls.

In the United States we like to build rather large malls surrounded by oceans of parkings. It seems to me I can map a couple basic things:

  1. A closed area marking the outline of the mall tagged with building=yes, name=Name of the mall
  2. An area for the large parking lot marked with amenity=parking

My question is whether #2 is very useful since it seems obvious a large mall will have public parking? It seems low value based on the effort to map them.

As an example here I have marked the parking:

Here I have not:

What are the preferences and conventions regarding this?

Your first option is the preferred one. We map everything and not just assume there should be something. You can also add all the parking aisles as highway=service + service=parking_aisle which then looks like:

But if you think it’s too much work then don’t. Mapping is about having fun. If you won’t add it, someone else might in the future.

Or atleast draw a highway=service at the places where you can enter the parking, it helps alot when you want to enter a parking space.

Thank you very much for the sample. A picture explains so much!

I tried a couple different things to play around and took a look at both Osmarender and Mapnik renderings to see how it draws at different zooms, etc. For my preference in these large parking lots striping every parking aisle draws a bit too wide at the zooms which are further out under Mapnik - and it ends up looking like a big white block. Yes probably something that can be adjusted in the rendering, but working with what I have now… there is a bit of art to it.

So for now, I added the primary traffic lanes in the parking lot and I think it looks well and provides some meaning. And it’s not too much work… You can see the same location now updated:

Using your example as a guide I finished out a much better mapping of a local park. I think this approach works really well - blocking the parking areas so they show up in a different color and with the “P” icon and parking aisles. Take a look:

Thanks for the help!

EDIT: You can see the rendering problem in my second URL at zoom = 15, Mapnik on the two North-West parking areas. Contrast to Osmarender where the aisles can be seen, in Mapnik the three aisles become a big white blob :slight_smile:

It may be worth still marking all the parking aisles. The rendering of parking_aisle in Mapnik has been an issue for a while: (osmarender)
and (Mapnik)

At some point the rendering will get fixed so perhaps easier to map the data now rather than go back and work out which bits you need to fill in again later.