Road Attributes

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Revision as of 16:05, 25 March 2019 by Vestigal (talk | contribs)

Road Name & Type

See this page.

Road Type Checkboxes


Check this box for standard non-paved (gravel & dirt) roads. This should be used in the overwhelming majority of cases where there is no pavement.


Use this for Tunnels (below ground) that are extended to the point where GPS would drop out. This box if checked helps the Waze routing system detect traffic jams and flow detection. It also allows extended periods of time without GPS signal, avoiding approximations.

Next to Carpool/HOV/Bus lane

This is not used in Australia. Please don't check this box.

Routing Preference (L4+)

Unfavoured (-1)

Has the effect on routing of lowering the road type by 1. e.g. if this is set on a Primary Street, the routing type will be Street.

Neutral (default)

No change on routing, the type it is, is the type that will be used for routing.

Preferred (+1)

Has the effect on routing of upgrading the road type by 1. e.g. if this is set on a Primary Street, the routing type will be Minor Highway.


Please be careful when adding routing preferences, as this has the effect of soft-locking all changes on those segments to L4 (effectively locking, but not obvious to lower level editors).

Speed Limits

Each direction of travel on a road can have a speed limit set on it. Waze uses the speed limit to (optionally) warn the driver when they're exceeding the limit. Editors should map the speed limits on roads with the following considerations:

  • Map the legal speed limit, not the opinion of the editor e.g. speed limits in car parks.
  • Avoid mapping speed limits on roundabouts, as they have no use.
  • Do not map advisory speeds, only speed limits.
  • Where variable speed limits are in use (such as digital signs, alternate speed when raining, school zones), editors should always map at the higher speed limit.


The "Seagull Rule" represents Waze's policy for setting elevation levels. The reason for it is related to the representation of roads, tunnels and bridges in the live map and the app.

Typical Elevation setup at a Bridge
  • If a seagull can fly right under it, it’s a bridge (Level 1+).
  • Seagulls don't fly underground, these are tunnels (Level -1 and lower)
  • For every other case the road is ground level (Level 0), even if it’s artificially elevated or dug under street level.

For example:

  • We mark bridges with level = 1.
  • We only mark a road as level 2 if there’s another bridge (1) running underneath it.
  • Same logic applies for tunnels (in opposite direction), and further (3,4 & -3,-4).


In many cases we will need to split segments into two or more segments to correctly mark only the right parts of the road as a bridge or a tunnel. (This is important for the map’s fidelity and as cues for drivers, see image on the right)

These bridges should be marked relatively tightly. This also applies to railroad segment types.

Dual Carriageways

This guidance is based on the global best editing practice for divided roads.

The following convention should be followed where possible, although it is acknowledged that you may need to deviate from it in some circumstances.

A road can be divided into be 2 one-way roads if all of the following conditions are met:

  1. The central reservation is greater than 15m.
  2. There's a visible gap between the GPS traces (when viewed at the 100m/500ft zoom level).
  3. It is split by physical barrier (e.g. Grass, raised concrete, jersey barrier etc).

Pedestrian refuges and painted road separations (cross hatching that can be driven over) should not normally be divided.

Special Note
Keep in mind that Waze actually works best when roads are not divided, because all reports made in the app for the other carriageway on divided roads are in vain - the app currently doesn't support these kinds of reports. In addition, representing a road as two one-way sections makes it difficult to control U-turns properly. Road dividing used to be more common in the past, so we have since increased the conditions to be met before dividing a road.

If there is a perfectly working divided road that does not meet the above stated conditions in the editor, don't un-divide it. It's a lot of work that can be put into improving other areas of the Waze map, rather than the risk of losing valuable traffic data if editing is not done correctly.

If a divided road isn't working and should be un-divided, then it is important to follow these instructions carefully, and get a second experienced (L4 and above) editor to verify the entire un-divide within 24 hours.

Other Situations

Roads Not Matching Aerials

With the change to Google aerial imagery there will probably be some situations where the current road layout doesn't match the images. It is advisable that these are locked at L3+, to prevent well-meaning editors "correcting" them.

"Unexpected" Situations

These are odd situations that occur sometimes. For example: a no-right-turn where you wouldn't expect one; a short one-way segment at the end of a two-way road; a deliberate no-name segment joining double-mini roundabouts. If you think that a feature is likely to be reverted by someone who doesn't know what was intended, it is acceptable to lock it.


If an area is subject to repeated bad edits, it may be locked up. This should only be done after discussion with the Australian Community team and the approval of the Country Managers (who may want to take further action).

Toll Segments

These should be locked to L5 to prevent interference.

Level 6 Locks

So far we have not identified any occasions where we really need to use L6 locks. We don't have so many L5 editors that we can't all keep track of what's going on, so we hope not to need it. But, if you have a situation that you feel needs a L6 lock, please post on the forum for discussion.