I have used symbol levels in my current project to define the hierarchy of the different roads. I have tried to make the symbol levels the same in order to achieve the desired look, with no luck. The roads are a minor element in the map that I am making and will all be symbolized the same except for width.

Shown in this screenshot: screenshot of map, wich colors added for clarification

(Colors have been added for clarification. The green are US Routes, orange are State Routes and white are local roads.)

If they are all white, is there a way in QGIS to have them look joined at their intersections, similar to all intersections of the local roads?

This is a tough one to explain, so if clarification is needed, please let me know.

  • are you using the rule-based rendered with “Symbol levels” enabled?
    – Mapperz
    Oct 25, 2013 at 15:31
  • @Mapperz: I don't think so. i just used symbol levels from the lower right of the symbology window.
    – LandArch
    Oct 25, 2013 at 16:33

1 Answer 1


It looks like Local Roads is a single data source, which is why you can enable the "joined" look to them for cartographic representation.

It also sounds like US Routes and State Routes are separate data sources, so you would need to build a separate cartographic dataset (a union of US and State Roads) for display purposes, and keep your original ones for labeling. I believe this is an approach that will work.

  • All the Roads are in the same shapefile with a attribute filled with F, S or L to designate and classify them for symbology. If I do this the local roads still would not "join" with the new dataset on US and State Roads.
    – LandArch
    Oct 25, 2013 at 16:28
  • You could add a new attribute field and classify the roads: US & State = 1, Local = 2? Rendering by this new field could give you an appearance of the local roads (joined) and the major roads (joined).
    – bjmarra
    Oct 25, 2013 at 17:39
  • However, it may be a limitation of the software rendering against getting that joined look across the 2 classes of road data (while still maintaining different thicknesses of the classes).
    – bjmarra
    Oct 25, 2013 at 17:41
  • Agreed, doesn't sound like it can be done at this point.
    – LandArch
    Oct 25, 2013 at 18:09
  • 1
    I think I got it to work, modifying what you offered. I added the shp file twice and symbolized one all white with the varying widths. Then the other all black with matching varying widths slightly larger to get the black border. Works like a charm.
    – LandArch
    Nov 1, 2013 at 12:55

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