The first District line train out of Upminster in the morning is the first train anywhere on the underground network. It leaves the depot at 4.53, the only train anywhere in the system to set out from its base before 5am ... if you catch that train, you might be tempted to say ta-dah!—except you probably wouldn't, because nobody is thinking ta-dah! at seven minutes to five in the morning; certainly nobody on this train. People look barely awake, barely even alive. They feel the same way they look; I know because, this morning, I'm one of them.
John Lanchester on the experience, at once aversive and hypnotic, of catching the London Underground
. Lanchester's article is an extract from his forthcoming entry in the new Penguin Lines
series of tube-reading-friendly books released to commemorate the Underground's 150th anniversary
. Meanwhile, the Guardian
a collaborative Spotify playlist
of songs that mention Tube stations, for those so inclined.
posted by Sonny Jim
on Mar 6, 2013 -
Tunneling in any dense urban environment is an expensive proposition, but the $5 billion price tag for just the first two miles of the Second Avenue subway cannot be explained by engineering difficulties. The segment runs mainly beneath a single broad avenue, unimpeded by rivers, super-tall skyscraper foundations or other subway lines.
American taxpayers will shell out many times what their counterparts in developed cities in Europe and Asia would pay. In the case of the Second Avenue line and other new rail infrastructure in New York City, they may have to pay five times as much.
Amtrak is just as bad. Its $151 billion master plan for basic high-speed rail service in the Northeast corridor is more expensive than Japan’s planned magnetic levitating train line between Tokyo and Osaka, most of which is to be buried deep underground, with tunnels through the Japan Alps and beneath its densest cities.
- U.S. Taxpayers Are Gouged on Mass Transit Costs
posted by beisny
on Aug 28, 2012 -
Church and 30th St. San Francisco MUNI Construction
is a 12 minute time lapse film showing 3.5 days of construction crews replacing MUNI tracks in San Francisco. "This is a time-lapse video showing the replacement of the MUNI tracks in front of my house. Demolition began on the evening of Friday, October 8, and work continued around the clock until early in the morning of Tuesday, October 12. The MUNI folks were nice enough to distribute earplugs to those of us in the immediate vicinity."
posted by hippybear
on Oct 14, 2010 -
Intelligent Grouping Design is
... a new idea in public transportation. With many vans out and about town, a passenger can be quickly picked up wherever he happens to be and just as quickly conveyed to his desired destination. Via the cell-phone, people call into the central computer with their current location as well as their destination. The computer finds the nearest van whose route is also the most closest to the passenger's destination. The computer then modifies the route slightly to accommodate the new passenger's pickup and dropoff locations. The drivers don't have to exert themselves mentally on figuring out each route change as the vans equipped with satellite guidance technology.
posted by gregb1007
on Dec 11, 2003 -
Woo, trams to return to London
At last it looks as though there may finally be real progress in tackling the transport problems of one of the world's most congested cities. I wonder whether other nations should take note, or is it all just a pipe dream?
posted by Duug
on May 29, 2002 -