Municipal Park - Trail and Asset Data


I work for a municipality in Ontario Canada called Guelph. We are hoping to remove trails on open data sources that may be used by other apps to direct people to access areas that may pose a hazard to users or compromise integrity of city services such as drinking water and wastewater. I have made edits to remove any of these trails already but am wondering if there is a way to be alerted when new data is added in specific areas of concern so I do not need to check them repeatedly! We do not want to undermine any other user created data, but just want to keep people safe in a few key spots!

Seconding @Hungerburg , you will probably want to read up on various tags like access or hazard to name just two. Even if the administrative entity is the one doing the edits, a straight-up deletion of features is likely to be considered vandalism.

By leaving the trail features intact, but tagging them appropriately, data consumers will be able to tell that yes, there may be a trail there, but it’s not open to the public, or that there are significant hazards. And consider including information with source tags, like source:hazard=some organization, to more explicitly convey that an official body has designated these features as hazardous.

As it is, an OSM user might look at this area and figure the trails just need to be mapped out, and it may get added back in by an uninformed but well-intentioned person.

There is Latest OpenStreetMap Edits per Tile – zoom into the area you care about and when logged into your OSM account you can subscribe to a so called feed/alert for changes.

Mind you, the openstreetmap community can be very strict: E.g. when it is dangerous to pass somewhere, deleting the pathway – when it is observably there on the the ground – not wanted, rather marked up accordingly. This might take you some extensive reading up subject matter, others may have more to say.

Similar concerns have been raised before - you might find this summary of tagging helpful: United States/Trail Access Project - OpenStreetMap Wiki

The spirit of OSM is that if a trail exists, but is private, it ought to be mapped and marked as such. Well-behaved apps (which are likely responsible for 99% of traffic) will exercise suitable discretion when rendering (or not rendering) the trail.