Empirical determination of geometric parameters for selective omission in a road network

Qi Zhou, Zhilin Li

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Selective omission in a road network is a necessary operation for road network generalization. Most existing selective omission approaches involve one or two geometric parameters at a specific scale to determine which roads should be retained or eliminated. This study proposes an approach for determining the empirical threshold for such a parameter. The idea of the proposed approach is to first subdivide a large road network, and then to use appropriate threshold(s) obtained from one or several subdivisions to infer an appropriate threshold for the large one. A series of experiments was carried out to validate the proposed approach. Specifically, the road network data for New Zealand and Hong Kong at different scales (ranging from 1:50,000 to 1:250,000) were used as the experimental data, and subdivided according to different modes (i.e. administrative boundary data, a regular grid of different sizes, different update years, and different road network patterns). Not only geometric parameters, but also structural and hybrid parameters of existing selective omission approaches were involved in the testing. The experimental results show that although the most appropriate thresholds obtained from different subdivisions are not always the same, in most cases, the appropriate threshold ranges often overlap, especially for geometric parameters, and they also overlap with those obtained from the large road network data. This finding is consistent with the use of different subdivision modes, which verifies the effectiveness of the proposed approach. Several issues involving the use of the proposed approach are also addressed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)263-299
Number of pages37
JournalInternational Journal of Geographical Information Science
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • Map generalization
  • parameter determination
  • road network
  • selective omission

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences


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