Fixing Megabridges in TIGER

For some reason … for whatever reason … the TIGER data has some entire ways marked as being bridges.  When examined, only a small portion of them is a bridge. I’ve been fixing them as I happen to notice them, but today I felt like seeking them out. I thought about writing a fancy program to parse the New York State section (as found on <a href=””>Cloudmade downloads</a>) to look for bridges.

I was reminded, instead, that the XAPI can do its own cut of OSM data. It’s fairly straightforward to do. The full XAPI documentation is in the wiki. All I did was fire up JOSM, and make a few bounding boxes around New York State. I did three: one for the southern tier, one for the adirondacks, and one for the NYC metro area. The first one’s URL looks like this:[bridge=yes][bbox=-79.6289,41.9677,-73.3667,43.3731]
I fetched it with wget -O southern.osm ‘URL’.  It’s only five megabytes and loads into JOSM easily.

Once loaded into JOSM, you can see the very long bridges. They stick out like a sore thumb. I pick one, zoom in to fill the screen with it. I have the Terraserver Ortho WMS layer turned on, so I can see where the bridge really should be. Two selects of nodes, split the way, and delete the bridge=yes tag. I’ll have New York State fixed up in about an hour’s worth of editing (not counting the time to write this blog entry).

4 thoughts on “Fixing Megabridges in TIGER

  1. RussNelson Post author

    Yes. The photos come from the USGS and are a US Federal Government work product. Unequivocably public domain.

  2. EdD

    Excellent. Thanks for your reply. My initial Google search found pages which made it seem dubious but I’ve just looked again and found your message saying it was all good so you’ve obviously looked into it thoroughly.

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