Index Diversion 4: Retro Singapore MRT


Just like Mother used to make. Not really.

This came out of a request of a good friend of mine that, instead of drawing an old network so it looks new (e.g.), I should draw a new network so it looks old. It’s a map of the Singapore MRT, as it should look around 2024, drawn like a proper 1950s tube map.

It reached the point today where fiddling with it was a hindrance more than a help, so I guess that must be the good Lord telling me to post this thing and get it over with. Notes:

  • I’m not a fan of stuff drawn in the style of the modern tube map, I think it’s overdone and the tube map style overrated, but the tube maps that Harry Beck actually worked on are nothing short of spectacular. So if you’re gonna do something in a retro style, that’s what you pick.
  • I don’t believe Railway Sans is a particularly good open-source alternative to Johnston when creating a modern tube map, but it looks great when drawing an old tube map.
  • Having a straight North East Line was worth the weird bend where the Downtown Line loops back on itself. In addition, the north-south part of the Thomson Line is straight, as are the western ends of the East West Line and the Downtown Line. The eastern ends of both lines would have been straight as well had those LRT loops not been in the way.
  • The Circle Line is diamond-shaped and, for once, a complete loop. Stage 6 is shown as under construction because I have no idea what’ll happen with service patterns and those end-destination numbers once it opens.
  • Finding and playing with a good old paper texture so it looked just right was a real pain.

About theoditsek

I like going places.
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