Designer Peter Dunn created another fascinating transit map, which shows the Boston T based on the time it takes from downtown to other points:

Dunn previously made a travel time Metro map, and then when we talked about “spider maps” on Greater Greater Washington, put together one of those for the H Street neighborhood:

H Street “spider map.” Click for full version (PDF).

Transit maps generally lay out the lines and stations either geographically, based on their actual location, or diagrammatically, which shows the connections in the network and organizes the lines to be simple and straight.

But there is more information which riders need to know. They include service frequency (how often trains or buses come), span of service (is this a rush hour only line? does it run on weekends?) and travel times. Frequent network maps, like Metro’s geographic map or Dan Malouff’s schematic version for Washington area buses, are one way to highlight frequent routes. This time travel map is a way to give more information about times and distances.

Left: Frequent network map by WMATA. Right: Schematic version by Dan Malouff.

Transit maps shape the way people see a city, and affect people’s choices of how and where to travel. Experiments which add new information to maps or present information in a different way enrich our understanding of transit and create ideas which could make it into future generations of maps.

David Alpert is Founder and President of Greater Greater Washington and Executive Director of DC Sustainable Transportation (DCST). He worked as a Product Manager for Google for six years and has lived in the Boston, San Francisco, and New York metro areas in addition to Washington, DC. He lives with his wife and two children in Dupont Circle. Unless otherwise noted, opinions in his GGWash posts are his and not the official views of GGWash or DCST.