Transportation networks have three main footprints:
- Clearly defined and delimited. Road and rail networks are the most relevant examples of this mode of territorial occupation, with well-established land ownership (rights of way) along their paths. This implies only one exclusive use, and other functions are not possible. Access is only available to the modes using the network.
- Vaguely defined and delimited. Most maritime and air corridors are vaguely defined, as they often involve only a right of way. Multiple uses of that space are thus permitted. For instance, a maritime corridor can overlap a fishing zone. However, air and port terminals have specific and exclusive land ownership serving one dominant function.
- Without definition. In many telecommunication networks, overlapping is frequent, and the only authorization required is the right to broadcast from a specific location using a specific frequency. Most cellular networks are established by building a number of broadcast points, each creating its own telecommunication “cell”. The overlay of all these cells creates the illusion of a contiguous service. “No service” zones are also possible.