Archive for the ‘subway’ Category

Pizza Rat

September 28, 2015

Pizza Rat
Last week New York comedian Matt Little was at the First Avenue subway station waiting for the Canarsie Line when a fellow traveller walked down the stairs carrying a slice of pizza. Nothing unusual about that, except the diner was a rat. Mr. Little recorded a video on his phone, and it’s been watched 6 million times on YouTube:


Train Bridge

March 14, 2014

Train Bridge

The Reagan National Airport Metro station now has a Train Bridge:

“The ‘Train Bridge’ is Metro’s solution to temporarily out-of-service elevators at the National Airport station. Rather than shuttle passengers who need elevator assistance from the airport to another nearby station, Metro officials decided they could use a train to bridge the temporary gap.

And so, a train bridge is just that — an Metro train riders can use as a pass through to the other platform.”

“The station at National Airport is uniquely configured to allow such a use since it has three tracks. Metro officials simply park the train on the middle track, allowing folks to move easily between platforms depending on whether they’re headed toward Franconia-Springfield or into Prince George’s County.”

— “See Metro’s ‘Train Bridge,’” Lori Aratani, Washington Post


Transfer at Nonfiction

March 17, 2013

Students Max Pilwat, Keri Tan and Ferdi Rodriguez have an idea how to get more readers to the New York Public Library: Bring the library to the New York Subway.

The concept: Turn bored subway riders into readers by letting them preview digital copies of books on their cell phones using Near Field Communication (NFC). Browse a “bookshelf” poster, scan a title with your NFC-enabled cellphone, and download and read the first 10 pages  while you ride. Want to read the rest? Your phone will direct you to the nearest branch library that has a hard copy.


The iPod Society

October 28, 2011

The iPod Society

Psychologist Dr Ana Tajadura-Jimenez and her University of London colleagues confirm what you commuters already know: a personal music player protects you in the a crowded bus or subway car.


Trains and Brains

May 19, 2011

Trains and Brains (Not Drawn to Scale)

The classic London Underground Map, created by Harry Beck in 1933, is the granddaddy of all those schematic maps that chart subway systems in a simplified manner, without regard to the true scale of distances between stations. These maps reduce complex systems to comprehensible basics, but a recent NYU study shows that users actually regard the maps as if they were drawn to scale, and act accordingly:


Series 7000 Metro Railcars

November 9, 2010

Series 7000 Metro Railcar

Metro wants subway riders to help design new railcars to replace the old ones that smell of mildew and crush like empty beer cans. Let’s ask for Jacuzzis. Why not? The old trains have saunas. Every summer.

The new Series 7000 cars will be built by Kawasaki because Harleys cost too much. More here.


Image (“Series 7000 Metro Railcar — Artist Concept”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht,

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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New Subway Map

January 27, 2010

New Subway Map

At last, a truly comprehensive subway map that puts everything in perspective. It was created by Harvard’s Samuel Arbesman, who also blogs.

More about the map here.  You can download a copy.


h/t: Daily Telegraph.

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht,

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length. Please stand to the right on Metro escalators and mind the gap.

DC Car Free Day 22 September 2009

September 21, 2009

DC Car Free Day 22 September 2009

Break the car habit for one day.

Celebrate World Car Free Day on September 22nd. Commute on foot or by bike, bus or Metrorail. You can even go “Car-Lite” in a car pool.

Last year 5,445 residents of the Washington Metropolitan Area pledged to be car free for the day to improve air quality, save money, and reduce their carbon footprints. Take this year’s Car Free Pledge here. 

Car Free Celebrations are scheduled for Tuesday, September 22nd in DC (7th & F Streets NW, 11am – 3pm) and elsewhere.

 Learn more about Car Free Day Metro DC here.

Go Car Free on September 22, 2009


Top image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht,

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Metro Motivates Commuter Courtesy

May 27, 2009

Metro Motivates Commuter Courtesy

Observing that mass transit manners have become all too rare, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority has launched a 21st century ettiquette initiative, using Second Life commuter clones on YouTube:


Inauguration Day 2-Wheel Deal — Free Bike Valet Parking

January 14, 2009

Inauguration Day 2-Wheel Deal -- Free Bike Valet Parking

Bicycle buffs claim the best way to get to the Inauguration is on two wheels. Like everything else about this historic event, that remains to be seen.

One advantage bicyclists will  definitely have is free valet parking. Details (courtesy of the Washington Area Bicyclist Association) here.

Better RSVP. The Washington City Paper reports over 1,300 bike valet RSVPs to date. As far as we know at this time, bikes parked and locked outside the security perimeter of the parade area will not be removed by police unless they are obstructing traffic.

WABA has other bike-related Inauguration Day info on that event web site. Check back frequently — this unique special event has lots of inter-connected moving parts that will need last-minute tweaks, like a persnickety gear assembly on an untested touring bike. Remember: Security rules are always subject to change and reinterpretation, and it may rain.

A few bike bits:

Bikes are banned from the Metrorail subway system from January 17th through the 20th, but a couple of bikes can be hooked to the front of each Metrobus.