Baltimore RER Line 1 Strip Map

baltimore rer line 1 strip map

Hopefully unaffected by any lapse in federal funding.

This is a thing based off that Baltimore RER crayon map I did a long time ago, which I wanted to update for a long time because (a) the crayon I have in mind for the Baltimore-Washington area looks substantially different now and (b) the design language I used for the original maps still holds up really well.

(It is interesting how the format distorts the system being mapped, though. The Bel Air branch runs northeast from Baltimore but the way it joins up with the mainline means it looks like it goes vaguely west.)

The system as I currently envision it has four lines; I don’t really plan on doing similar maps for the others just yet, let alone a full map of the region, but I won’t say it’ll never happen.

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Hankyu Takarazuka Line Strip Map

hankyu takarazuka main line strip map

…and that’s what I did on my Thanksgiving long weekend.

Well, I mean, the series would be incomplete if I hadn’t done this one, too.

These are fun. Might do another one with a different system at some point.

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Hankyu Kobe Line Strip Map

hankyu kobe main line strip map


A companion map for the last thing. Not really a whole lot to say beyond that.

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Hankyu Kyoto Line Strip Map

hankyu kyoto main line strip map

Always the summers are slipping away…

A quick one I ripped out over the weekend.

I don’t plan on redoing the big Osaka map from three years ago anytime soon, largely because I firmly believe I could live a long, full, happy life if I never did a Big Map ever again, but that doesn’t mean I’ve stopped thinking about it altogether.

Hence, a strip map for the Hankyu Kyoto Line, which I picked because it interchanges with quite a few other systems in the Kansai region (and it holds particular nostalgic value for me because I spent a lot of time on it the first time I visited Japan back in 2010). Also the area has quite a few railway networks with redundant station numbering systems (there are, for instance, “K” lines on the JR West urban network, the Osaka Metro, the Kyoto Subway, the Kobe Subway, and the Kintetsu Railway) and I needed a way to differentiate between them, and using the railroad’s logo seemed like an interesting way to do that.

A hobbyhorse of mine is numbering all the different services that operate on Japanese commuter rail lines, because if you can make sense of that impenetrable system of semi-expresses and expresses and rapids and whatnot you’re a smarter person than I. It’s a work-in-progress still, but hopefully it’ll come together into something that makes sense.

One could, theoretically, do a strip map like this for the entire Hankyu-Nose railway network, but it’d be unwieldy and only worth it for the novelty and guess what I don’t have the brainpower to do right now.

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Ottawa-Gatineau Rapid Transit

ottawa rail map

Whaddaya think?

A crayon map for Canada’s capital. Notes:

  • The route of the Confederation Line here is not quite what’s actually getting built. It’s faithful to the actual route (albeit slightly extended) from the west up to Cleary station, whereupon it takes a slightly more southern route along Richmond Rd and Wellington Rd until it hits Bayview. (The meatspace route is during this time is followed by the Macdonald Line.) The Confederation Line deviates again east of Montréal Gloucester, where it follows St Joseph Blvd through Orléans while the Gréber Line takes over the actual route on the Queensway.
  • I switched the Trillium Line over to the suburban rail network because it uses suburban rail rolling stock and better justifies my running a parallel LRT line along Bank Street…where it probably should have gone to begin with.
  • Most of the more explicitly crayon-ey aspects of the O-Train network (the Gatineau and River Lines and the extensions to the Confederation Line) are just existing Transitway and Rapibus lines converted to light rail…which was frustrating when the Tranitway parallels an infinitely better north-south or east-west alignment (cf., again, Bank Street).
  • The design language is ganked from the Barcelona Metro…and is the sort of thing which, as I’ve learned, lends itself well to messiness. Uh oh.
  • Thanks to Richard Archambault for help with the French!
  • My kingdom for a translucent holographic SVG layer. 😉

I’m not sure when I’m gonna do another map poll, because this one was a pain to draw and I’m gonna be busy till the end of the year, but hopefully there’ll be another one in the next few months.

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Montreal Metro Abomination

montreal metro vignelli

My mom likes it.

I’m suffering from mapper’s block (that’s a term now) with the Ottawa thing I owe you, so I made this instead. You can thank the newest iteration of the official map for bringing this monstrosity into the world; the big thing I noticed about that one in particular was how aggressively evenly spaced the stations were, like they were dots on an imaginary grid. Thus, the general design language of Vignelli’s old sketches for the DC Metro map, via Cam Booth’s lovely hexalinear reconstruction of same, this time ported to a completely different city with a beautiful map of its own.

So naturally this meant deliberately ignoring everything that made the Montreal Metro map iconic—the tilt, the black background, the thick route lines—in favor of something that looks like it was constructed on a pegboard. I still like to think it has a certain charm on its own, though.

I might abstract the design language a bit more and inflict it on another city someday…

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Modesto Rapid Transit

modesto rapid transit

For Emily.

Back in June, when I did the California make-me-crayon-a-map poll, I had my own ideas about which map would produce the most interesting network, and, well, here we are.

Lines K, M, and N are on the old Tidewater Southern Interurban, while Line L runs on the Modesto & Empire. It’s not super-visible on the map, but the suburban/regional rail service patterns are pretty much identical to what’s shown on the old Bay Area map from 2016, which I would really like to redo someday to show through service from SF and a few other places.

Like all these little crayon maps, I obviously don’t think the city could actually support a rapid transit system this size, but I like to think Lines A-G and L could form a halfway decent BRT/high-frequency network.

Next map will be Canadian. Poll either tonight or tomorrow.

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