Rest area, how to tag them correctly

I’ve stumbled via Keepright into a discussion about how to tag a rest area. IMO even the Wiki page doesn’t allow for appropriate tagging, a highway should never be used as a border of an area. In sample areas I’ve lookup some and found “landuse=railway” for railroad areas and IMO this is exactly what’s IMO right. A rest area should be tagged as “landuse=service”.

PS Could anybody forward this to the appropriate ML and link the thread back into the forum

This sounds reasonable to me. Although a rest area is typically associated to a highway, it is not a highway on its own, but an area which contains several highways / parking aisles, buildings and so on. So it certainly makes sense to tag it as landuse.

Just a small remark: I think it should rather be “landuse=services”.

I’ve long thought if “service” or “services” should be used. IMO landuse identifies a single area and therefore a singular name should be used (as most of other landuse=*). Yet many people think more of several objects of landuse type on this area, therefore “services” should be used. I’m undecided what’s better.


Somewhere in the tag there needs to be a “highway”. There are many other types of services that this feature isn’t about at all. So call it (whatever)=highway_services.

I also don’t think that "(whatever)"should be “landuse”. In practice, highway=services is used like an amenity tag - for example, most uses of highway=services are on nodes, and landuse shouldn’t be used on nodes!

Therefore, I suggest amenity=highway_services.

Well it’s perfectly fine to use “highway=services” on highway nodes as similar “railway=services” for railroad nodes etc. Yet for areas enclosures, landuse is IMO best. Sure instead of “landuse=services”, “landuse=highway_services” might be equally well.