European Commission logo
INSPIRE Community Forum

Harmonization of Functional Road Class at EU level

National road classifications are usually determined by the corresponding road legislation / regulation in each country. Therefore, these classifications cannot be directly mapped to a common classification at EU level.

TWG-TN included the "FunctionalRoadClass" transport property in the Transport Networks (TN) data specification. It allows Member States to assign their national road classification to a set of ordered / hierarchical categories in the Transport Network data specification (first class, second class, ...) at EU level. Each category may be mapped to one hierarchic level in this classification.

However, the roads assigned by different countries / Member States to each of these hierarchic levels may not be necessarily comparable.

Further harmonization would be desirable, i.e. some guidance should be included in the data specification on how to map different road types to each EU category. This should be revised taking into account the current state-of-the-art regarding European road regulation.


  • Jenny RASSMUS

    Yes, there is indeed a need to harmonise functional roadclass.


    The problem as I see it is the very vague definition of the different functional roadclasses. The classes are supposed to reflect the importance of the road in the sense of it's functional role in the network. But when does a road go from being most important to second most important? And what does important even mean? This also makes it difficult to use other existing classifications of the roads to construct functional roadclass. And it may not even be possible, functional roadclass is after all a classification of it's own.


    In Sweden we have implemented functional roadclass in our national road database, but even on a national level the classification is not fully harmonised. This is due to the fact that there are almost 300 organisations (state and municipalities) performing the classifications. And although we have some national guidance on how to perform the classification, the result is not always comparable, so obviusly that is not sufficient.


    In the Inspire TN data specification there is a reference to EuroRoadS, but as far as I have seen, the documentation from EuroRoadS doesn't provide any real support on how to deal with the classification. I fully agree that there is need for more guidance.