Official Map: Métro de Montréal, Québec, Canada

Requested by pomme-poire-peche

Montréal’s Metro map instantly stands out from the crowd  by virtue of its black background - a feature only rarely seen in transit maps. Although the idea of a subway serving Montréal was first tabled in the early 1900s, it wasn’t until 1966 that it finally opened.

Have we been there? No.

What we like: Graphically bold and clean. Black background and subdued colour for the waterways really allow the thick, colourful route lines to stand out. Really like the “coloured square” effect for interchange stations between the Métro and the commuter rail lines. The geography shown, while still based in reality, is abstract enough to work well with the bold route lines.

What we don’t like: I’m not a fan of the small caps type treatment for station names – it breaks up the names and looks awkward when placed in the coloured boxes at the ends of the lines. The north pointer and legend look unfortunately generic, while the placement of the elevator symbols is abysmal (pomme-poire-peche asked me to ignore these, as they apparently aren’t there on the maps in stations, but they’re kind of hard not to notice!). Some of the curves and angles on the commuter rail lines seem poorly chosen or drawn.

Our rating: I love it when a map is so distinctive that it couldn’t possibly be from anywhere else in the world than the city it represents - and this is definitely all Montréal’s. A few minor flaws detract from the overall quality, but this is better than the average map. Three-and-a-half stars.

3.5 Stars

(Source: Official STM website)