Subway NY NJ, the proposal for a more complete map of rapid transit in the urban core of New York, debuted last week with coverage from CityMetric, Curbed, Gothamist, hMAG, Transit Maps, and WNYC’s Transportation Nation. Cameron Booth, editor of Transit Maps, called Subway NY NJ “a compelling proposal”, and offered this endorsement:
I personally think that this is a simple but incredibly awesome amendment to the New York subway map that provides useful information to the end user – which is what a transit map should be about, right?
CityMetric reports that Subway NY NJ was their biggest story of the week:
Biggest story of the week, that was. People love subway maps.
— CityMetric (@CityMetric) May 15, 2015
Gothamist writer Jen Carlson covered the proposal in an article titled NJ Man Leads Fight To Feature PATH Trains Prominently On The NYC Subway Map. As of this writing, the article has 295 comments – a few with the usual New Jersey bashing – but many offer good, constructive suggestions. JRod5417 supports the proposal’s rationale for building awareness of trans-Hudson transit:
GreatBong suggests the Subway NY NJ map should be displayed on PATH trains as well as the NYC Subway:
Good news for GreatBong: Subway NY NJ already calls for PATH trains to display the combined map, and even suggests a way to generate ad revenue:
The updated map should be displayed on all PATH Trains in addition to all New York City Subway trains. Each New York City Subway car typically contains eight 22″ X 21″ advertising spaces called Subway Squares – two of which are used to display the Subway Map at either end of every car. The equivalent in PATH cars is the Commuter Card – a 33″ x 21″ advertising space adjacent to the doors in each car. The height difference between the two cards presents an advertising opportunity for PATH: an 11″ x 21″ strip at the top or bottom of the map that would allow advertisers to reach riders every time they look at the map to plan the next stage of their journey.
Michael Langwell agreed with the proposal’s logic that PATH should be more prominently displayed because it accepts the MetroCard, and steeb suggested further differentiating PATH visually from the Subway:
Deter Pinklage argued that including PATH would add clutter to the Subway map. Others rebutted, noting that PATH occupies a currently empty region of the map, and that the map itself doesn’t use space effectively where it shows eastern Queens:
Jamie questioned the relevance of including Staten Island Rapid Transit (SIRT) on the NYC Subway Map:
We need the most widely-used rail rapid transit map to provide a comprehensive view of service in the bi-state urban core. That, of course, includes Staten Island Rapid Transit, but it should also include PATH as an equally relevant part of the network. After all, a 1909 proposal would have extended PATH service to Staten Island via Bayonne:
Tubes were to run from the Grove-Henderson Station to a station under the CNJ tracks at Communipaw where the CNJ would terminate its runs, eliminating the Jersey City Terminal and the CNJ ferry service. The tunnels would continue to a portal near the CNJ Van Nostrand Place Station, where H&M trains would run along the CNJ line, with stations at Greenville Avenue, 45th Street, 33rd Street, 22nd Street, and West 8th Street. South of West 8th Street, the trains would enter twin tubes under the Kill van Kull and run to points on Staten Island. This line was to be built after the Sixth Avenue-Grand Central Station extension, allowing uninterrupted travel from 42nd Street to Staten Island.
Curbed NY writer Jeremiah Budin also covered the story in an article titled Should New York’s Subway Map Embrace NJ’s PATH Trains?. Budin’s take was disappointing, beginning with this:
We’ve seen a lot of outlandish proposed changes to the New York City subway map around these parts, but this may be the most galling one yet.
Thankfully, many of the 42 comments on Budin’s article strongly support the proposal. Here’s a sampling:
In another comment, Microphone noted (emphasis mine):
Either way, it makes no sense that the AirTrain is on the map as a colored line but PATH, which is run by the same agency, is not. The logical line to be drawn is not an arbitrary political border, but level of service and utility to users. That’s the line between rapid transit services (such as NYCSubway, AirTrain, PATH) on the one hand, and commuter railroads (NJT and LIRR) on the other. LIRR and NJT run much more limited services (not 24/7/365, LOOOONG headways), do not accept Metrocards, and are an order of magnitude more expensive. Not very relevant to most rapid transit users, who care about frequent, convenient, all-day services.
Finally, NYCsince83 kept it short and sweet: