Shop style preference

Some shops are a building area and then a point inside whereas some use the area itself as the shop. I understand doing this when one building contains multiple shops (although I still think it’d be neater to use multiple joint areas), but this is often done when that’s not the case. Is there a general consensus for a preference between the two styles?

There isnt a general consensus, but I see a fairly logical progression:

  • Shop as node (enables mapping many shops quickly, easy to move as one adds to the mapping, convenient if locational accuracy is iffy (indoor malls, poor imagery, wildly wandering GPS etc) or no building polygons. There are two styles: roughly at centroid of shop, or on the entrance.
  • Shop on building ways. This is most times a simplifications: shops can span several buildings, equally a building may contain several shops (on one or more levels).
  • Shops as individual areas distinct from buildings when necessary. Probably with level tags
  • As above but now with entrances marked (using the entrance node for shop fails the “one object, one feature” rule when a shops has multiple entrances.
  • As above with full indoor tagging

A couple of things I’m not sure about:

  • Best way to represent a shop which occupies multiple non-contiguous buildings (multi polygon, separate shops etc)
  • Shops with several floors where floor areas are disjunct from each other (e.g., Waterstones in Nottingham where floors 1-3 occupy both the same area as the ground floor & the shop next door).


  • Shops only accessed through a door & stairs to first floor (often hairdressers or beauty salons): either a node with level=1 tag a conventional distance from the front of the building, or on the entrance door.
  • Multi-level shops. Use areas on level 0, nodes on other levels, with nodes may be offset to allow shops on all levels to render.

Nodes remain the method of choice for:

  • Market stalls (whether indoor or outdoor)
  • Shops in kiosks
  • Roadside vendors with a well-defined pitch