The Lyon Metro map (March 2012, 4 stars) on the platform at Croix-Paquet station — reputedly the steepest Metro station in the world, with a 17 percent grade! Although nominally part of Lyon’s Metro system, the “C” Line is really a refurbished rack-and-pinion funicular, with the earliest trains running as far back as 1891.
Historical Map: Indicateur d’Itinéraires, Paris, c. 2003
An old-school interactive Metro map in Paris. Simply press one of the 360 or so buttons underneath the map, and a path lights up from your current location to your chosen destination. Who needs a fancy touch screen kiosk? I particularly like the way that the furtherest reaches of the RER lines are compressed into diagrammatic form to allow the centre of Paris to be shown as large as possible.
This particular example is still in use, despite it being around ten years out of date: the extension of Ligne 14 from Madeleine to St. Lazare (which opened in December 2003) is shown as being under construction.
(Source: Hervé Platteaux/Flickr)
Detail of a Province of Milan Transit Map, Italy
Looks like a visually interesting and abstract map, but I haven’t been able to track down a full version on the Internet. Looks like it might show bus service (green and thin black lines) and regional rail (thick grey line at the bottom of the picture). Does anyone know where I can find the whole map?
Historical Maps: Evolution of the Stockholm Metro Map, c.1958-1971
Here’s a fantastic photo showing three versions of the map for the Stockholms tunnelbana, probably taken at the Stockholm Transit Museum. By comparing the three maps and the looking at the stations shown on each of them, I’ve roughly dated each as follows.
The top map is from between November 19, 1958 (when the Farsta station opened), and November 14,1959, when Rågsved station (shown on the middle map, but not on the top one) opened.
The middle map is from around late 1964- early 1965, as it shows Fruangen and Ornsberg stations (1964), but only shows Ostermalmstorg (1965) as being under construction.
The final map is from between 1967 and 1971, as it’s after Ropsten and Vårberg have opened, but before the extension to Farsta Strand has been built. Interestingly, this extension is shown as being “under construction” on the middle map, but makes no appearance at all on the final map.
What’s truly fascinating about this trio of maps is the rapid transition from geographical map, through a more stylised map (note that it retains some semblance of a coastline where the tracks cross water), to a severe rectilinear diagram in just 13 years or so. Each map is also quite beautiful in their own way.
Route numbers on the second and third maps allow service patterns and short run lines to be shown very effectively. I think the treatment on the final map is one of the best I have ever seen: it’s clear to see exactly which stations Line 13 runs between, for example.
Compare to the current Stockholm transit map (Nov. 2011, 3.5 stars)
London Underground Quilt
Made as a wedding gift for two transit nerd friends, this is beautiful work. The artist wasn’t content with just Zone 1 or a simplification: this is the whole map, including the DLR and the Overground with their distinctive white centre-stroked route lines.
Click here to view the entire set of photos on Flickr, including lots of work-in-progress shots. Simply stunning!
Game of “1870”
A railroad-building board game set in the 19th century, complete with stock market shenanigans. Part of the “18xx” series of games, this particular game is set in the Mississippi Valley of the United States. Looks like the game allows for some creative and unusual track layout: I love the the loop-de-loop in the middle of the board!
This totally reminds me of a misspent youth playing Railroad Tycoon and beating those robber barons into submission.
Historical Map: Tyne and Wear Metro, England, c. 2000
Showing the then-proposed extension to Sunderland, which opened in 2002.
Interestingly, the 60-degree angled section running through Newcastle is flipped the other way compared to the current map (Nov. 2011, 3.5 stars). I’d say the change was mainly made to accommodate the Calvert typeface used on the modern day map: it’s far more attractive than the Futura Condensed on display here, but a lot wider. Without the flip, the labels for South Gosforth and Four Lane Ends stations on the current version would almost certainly clash.
Official Map: H.C. Chambers & Son Bury St. Edmunds - Colchester Routes, England
An attractive and stylish route map on the side of a handsome red double-decker bus. While the service from Bury to Colchester via Bures carries a single route number (753), you actually have to change buses in Sudbury, hence the “double dot” shown there. The timetable on the bus company’s website warns that because of congestion, connections between the two buses at Sudbury may not always be timely.
The second line shown from Sudbury to Colchester via Nayland is actually a separate route, the 84. Handy information if you miss your connection to the Colchester leg of the 753, I guess…
While this bus looks fantastic, the same can’t be said for the H.C. Chambers & Son website, which is completely craptacular.