NYU in the Bronx?

April 25th, 2008 § 1 comment

via Gothamist

Designer of the 1970s subway map, Maximo Vignelli, has updated his creation for an article in Men’s Vogue. I’m a big fan of geometric rail maps similar to the original iconic London Underground map, originally from the 1930s. In London, it works fabulously, since you generally don’t care about what’s above ground, you only care about the station you’re going to and the changes you need to make in order to arrive there. The Underground Map assumes that you’ve got an A-Z to handle the above-ground stuff, and just gives you the information you need. The current NYC subway map tries to cram somewhat-accurate geographical data onto the map in addition to the subway lines. The result is that neither the subway lines nor the geography are easy to read, and the map is cluttered and difficult to navigate. It’s quite hard to know the difference between the local and the express by looking at the map, for example. Vignelli’s map makes the difference clear by having a distinct colored line for each train, so everything is separate.

I did notice a few gaffes in the updated version, though. Most of them are relatively trivial; for example, it does not note that the Cortlandt St. station is closed for renovations. This one is by far my favorite, though:

Wait a minute: NYU is still in the Bronx? This map is definitely a child of the seventies!

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§ One Response to NYU in the Bronx?

  • Chris says:

    I say it’s NYU’s “glocal” plan – Before NYU takes over the world its got to take over the remainng 4 Boroughs. Manhattan – check, Brooklyn – check. Bronx – next ;)

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