Road atlas  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

A road atlas is a map or set of maps that primarily display roads and transport links rather than geographical information.


Road Atlases come in many shapes, sizes and scales. Many motoring organisations, especially those in the European Union, North America, Australia and New Zealand, (basically the majority of the most developed countries with the best road networks), produce road maps because of the number of people that will need to use them.

Differences in styles occur specifically on maps that are of individual countries that have a large scale so that the user can find the most use of it. An example is the AA's Close-up Map of Britain, which as the title suggests the map is of a large scale and is very good for driving on and off road due the scale being able to place tracks as well as conventional roads.

In the case of maps such as European maps or of the United States and other parts of North America for the European market, the maps will usually have smaller scales, as many will only be used as a rough guide and people will know prior to travelling where they are going, and these maps will assist them to be able to plan their route.

European maps will vary in scale and people wishing to buy a map of Europe will have to consider where they are travelling to, or if it is just for general interest, they will need to find a map to suit their needs.

Maps that are to be sold in the United States and Canada their scales will usually be the best available as these maps can be used corporately for businesses and by tourists or for just general interest.

Australian and New Zealand maps will be of smaller scale if being made to be sold for the European market and will usually produced by a motoring organisation or mapmaker from either country because they will have an advantage to the knowledge of the layouts of roads, railways and rivers etc.

On the other hand if they are to be sold in either Australia or New Zealand then they may have a larger scale for the customer's need.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Road atlas" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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