public transportation

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Design History Photography

The Wild Architecture of Soviet-Era Bus Stops Photographed by Christopher Herwig

December 6, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Photographer Christopher Herwig has circled the former Soviet Union, exploring the most remote areas of Georgia, Russia, and Ukraine to find and photograph its unique bus stops. After the success of his first book Soviet Bus Stops, he decided to explore the subject matter again for his new follow-up collection Soviet Bus Stops Volume II. In this book Herwig focuses on Russia rather than its former Soviet counterparts, driving nearly 10,000 miles around the massive country finding its incredibly diverse transportation shelters.

These architectural forms are more deeply explored in a forward by architecture and culture critic Owen Hatherley, who details the government policies that have allowed the bus stops to remain. You can view more of the Jordan-based photographer’s work on his website and Vimeo. (via Design You Trust)

 

 



Art

80-Year-Old Wooden Escalators are Repurposed as a Sculptural Ribbon by Artist Chris Fox

December 5, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Photos by Josh Raymond / Chris Cox

Artist Chris Fox was tasked with repurposing two pairs of timber escalators that were first installed at Sydney’s Wynyard Station in 1931. The escalators have carried passengers for over 80 years and slowly became an iconic symbol of the city’s identity. Fox’s solution is Interloop, a twisting, accordion-like ribbon that is now suspended from the station ceiling, stitching together 244 wooden escalator treads in an otherworldly design.

Fox says Interloop is intended to permanently enshrine the motion of the escalators while also communicating that passengers remain stationary while riding them. The piece is the final step in a significant overhaul of the station that now features new elevators and escalators, a larger concourse, and improvements to ventilation and ticketing.

You can read more about Interloop and the history of Wynyard Station in the Sydney Morning Herald, and see more photos and behind-the-scenes process shots on Chris Fox’s website. (thnx, Evan!)

 

 



Design

Taipei Transforms Subway Cars to Mimic Sporting Venues for Upcoming Summer Universiade

July 17, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Photo by @didiforu

To spark interest for the upcoming 2017 Summer Universiade, the city of Taipei has employed a fantastic marketing strategy that sees the city’s subway cars turned into realistic backdrops of several popular sporting venues. The floors of each car have been replaced by laminate overlays of track lanes, grass turf, basketball courts, and baseball fields—though by far the most popular car is the swimming pool. The Universiade begins August 19th and involves 22 different sports across 70 venues. You can see more photos of the Taipei MRT transit cars on Instagram. (via Design You Trust, Taiwan News)

Taipei City Government Department of Information and Tourism

Photo by @chi._.851229

Photo by @chi._.851229

Photo by @alexwuzizi

Photo by @uu.yi

Photo by @chendao

 

 



Design History

The Roman Empire’s 250,000 Miles of Roadways Imagined as a Subway Transit Map

June 12, 2017

Christopher Jobson

University of Chicago sophomore Sasha Trubetskoy spent a few weeks designing this amazing subway-style transit map of all the roads in the Roman Empire circa 125 AD. As Kottke notes, Rome constructed 250,000 miles of roads starting in 300 BC—over 50,000 miles of which were paved with stone—linking a total of 113 provinces from Spain to modern day Britain to the northern tip of Africa.

Trubetskoy pulled data from numerous sources, but took liberties where the history is fuzzy. “The biggest creative element was choosing which roads and cities to include, and which to exclude,” he shares. “There is no way I could include every Roman road, these are only the main ones. I tried to include cities with larger populations, or cities that were provincial capitals around the 2nd century.”

You can see the map in a bit more detail on his website, and if you donate a few bucks he’ll send you a hi-res PDF fit for printing. (via Kottke)

 

 



Animation Design

Animated Subway Maps Compared to Their Actual Geography

May 31, 2017

Christopher Jobson

New York by playhouse_animation

Designing a public transit map can be a complicated process, taking months if not years to create a concise layout that can be interpreted quickly for commuters on the go. To make things easier to understand the obvious decision is to use symbolic geography in lieu of real maps so that everything fits in a legible manner. Over at the subreddit r/DataIsBeautiful, Reddit user vinnivinnivinni had thew idea to create an animated comparison of a Berlin subway map compared to its real geography. The post went viral and several other users chimed in with their own contributions. Gathered here are some of the best examples, but you can see a few more on Twisted Sifter (gotta love Austin).

Berlin by vinnivinnivinni

Tokyo by -Ninja-

Singapore by wrcyn

Shanghai by KailoB6

São Paulo by sweedishfishoreo

Washington D.C. by stupidgit

Oslo by iamthedestroyer

Montreal by weilian82

 

 



Design History

Kayashima: The Japanese Train Station Built Around a 700-Year-Old Tree

January 31, 2017

Johnny Strategy

Photo by Kosaku Mimura/Nikkei

In the Northeast suburbs of central Osaka stands a curious train station unlike any other. Kayashima Station features a rectangular hole cut into the roof of the elevated platform and, from inside, a giant tree pokes its head out like a stalk of broccoli. It’s almost like a railway version of Laputa.

The large camphor tree is older than most records but officials believe it to be around 700 years old. The story of how this tree and station became, quite literally, intertwined, varies depending on who you ask. It certainly has to do with a great reverence for nature, but also a fair amount of superstition.

Kayashima Station first opened in 1910 and, at the time, the camphor tree stood right next to the station. For the next 60 years the station remained largely unchanged. But an increase in population and overcrowding began to put pressure on the station and plans for an expansion where approved in 1972, which called for the tree to be cut down.

But the camphor tree had long been associated with a local shrine and deity. And when locals found out that station officials planned to remove the tree there was a large uproar. Tales began to emerge about the tree being angry, and unfortunate events befalling anyone who attempted to cut it down. Someone who cut a branch off later in the day developed a high fever. A white snake was spotted, wrapped around the tree. Some even saw smoke arise from the tree (it was probably just a swarm of bugs).

And so, the station officials eventually agreed to keep the tree and incorporate it into the new elevated platform’s design. In 1973 construction began and the new station was completed in 1980. The station even surrounded the base of the tree with a small shrine. To this day, the tree still stands thanks to a strong, local community and a little bit of superstition. (syndicated from Spoon & Tamago)

Photo by Studio Ohana.

Photo by Studio Ohana.

 

 



Design

Mini Metros: Minimalist Worldwide Transit Maps by Peter Dovak

January 4, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Mini Metros is an ongoing series of worldwide public transit maps that have been “shrunken and simplified” into tiny diagrams by D.C.-based designer Peter Dovak. So far he’s completed over 200 light rail and metro systems and made them available in different configurations as posters and mugs on Society6. (via Kottke)