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#1 2018-07-25 13:43:17

From: Hamburg
Registered: 2013-07-13
Posts: 628

Quebec: How to distinguish autoroutes from other highways?

The legislation in Quebec defines default speed limits (=when no sign overrides this) of 100 km/h for autoroutes and 90 km/h on other paved highways:

328. Except on roads where the opposite is indicated by signs or signals and without restricting the scope of section 327, no person may drive a road vehicle at a speed
(1)  of less than 60 km/h or more than 100 km/h on autoroutes
(2)  in excess of 90 km/h on public highways surfaced with concrete, asphalt or a similar material;


Thus, there is a necessity to be able to distinguish roads designated as autoroutes from other national highways. Whether a highway is an autoroute or not, cannot be linked to physical properties of the road (e.g. dual carriageway / all roads tagged as highway=motorway), at least not by law, because

297. The Minister of Transport may, by means of the proper signs, designate a public highway as an autoroute.


In other words, the law does not dictate any hard requirements for a highway to be designated as an autoroute. How it looks in the reality I do not know, but not sure if it is relevant unless the situation is absolutely unambiguous.

I also noticed that unlike how autoroutes are referred to in the wikipedia, autoroutes in OSM are not tagged like ref=A-20 etc. but simply ref=20.

So, my question: Is it possible to determine whether a highway is an autoroute based on the tags of that highway? Are all autoroutes consistently tagged in a way so that they can be clearly distinguished from other highway?
And, well, if not, what's your suggestion for a tag that denotes this?


#2 2020-05-23 22:59:38

Sebastien April
New Member
Registered: 2020-05-23
Posts: 1

Re: Quebec: How to distinguish autoroutes from other highways?


This link will help you clarify. It comes straight from the Government's geographical data, including those from the Ministry of Transportation: … es_sup_act


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