Mapping Private Lake Communities

I working on an area with multiple private lakes communities, and a few questions have arose.

  1. Most of the amenities are property of the respective lake association, and accessible only to members in good standing. Should these be tagged as “private” or “permit”?

  2. Some amenities, such as parks and beaches, do not have an “access” tag. Can I simply add “access=private” or access=permit" manually? I’ve tried it and it doesn’t appear to have any effect.

  3. Many of the roads, while accessible to and often used by the public, are privately owned and maintained by the lake association. Should these be tagged as public, private, or permit? I’ve also considered permissive, as access is not typically enforced unless there is a disturbance or complaint.

  4. Though they are not official government entities, could I use “administrative boundry” to indicate the borders of the associations, and tag these accordingly with the community information?

The one private community I have edited, I used the following:

  1. For areas that you need to show a member/owner card I tagged as access=private.

  2. For the roads, which are signed as private but not gated, I tagged as access=permissive. If there is a gate or guard shack then the road behind tagged as access=private

  3. The one I worked on acts pretty much as a city or town in terms of services provided, fees charged, fines levied, etc. A previous mapper has set an administrative boundary with admin_level=10 and I have left it as is.

I’d agree with pretty much all of this, except for the administrative boundary. Use something like operator on the area, and perhaps a place=neighbourhood tag rather than admin_level. Most will have some kind of web presence so add that too.

Figure Eight Island, NC. Looks like I mapped the guard point and access bridge of Figure Eight Island as access=private, but the roads on the island are still marked access=yes. I also added the note on the, then, node for the island in this changeset.

Figure Eight Island is a good simplified case of a private community as it is on an island. It is also very well documented on Wikipedia. Certainly, in this case I think the land and roads should all have access=private. It’s a very long time since I visited, but we had to wait whilst the guards checked that we were expected by our hosts (relatives of my friends).

Park Estate, Nottingham. For one with less restricted access to roads (and pretty much universal permissive access for cyclists and pedestrians, we have The Park Estate in Nottingham. Here the roads are marked access=destination : it is possible to drive straight in at some entrances, but others are only accessible by residents with a card to activate the gate. This particular approach was adopted to allow relatively simple access for visitors and tradespeople, but to shut down the possibility of using it as route to by-pass traffic in the city centre. This is also a good well-documented example of what the owners do and don’t do.

I’ve also mapped one in Florida somewhere, but not one I can find quickly.