Tag Archives | Maps

News & Notes

News & Notes

Temporary uses can enliven city neighborhoods [Greater Greater Washington]

Imagine you have a long-vacant storefront or empty lot in your neighborhood. What if, just for a few months, it could become a plant nursery, a food garden, a beer garden, a sculpture garden, a playground, a clothing boutique or a tiny movie theater?

These small, temporary projects have the ability to revitalize vacant spaces, enliven neighborhoods, and provide small entrepreneurs a way test out their ideas with relatively small capital investments. This is what’s called “temporary urbanism” and shows how we can put vacant space back into productive use, even if only temporarily.

Transportation groups want to increase gas tax [Politico]

Voinovich also makes a point raised by others: Most drivers won’t even notice a gas tax increase.

A BP station in the Cleveland area was selling gas for $3.45 per gallon the day Voinovich spoke to POLITICO. The day before, he said, it was 25 cents cheaper. “It’s all over the lot,” he said of gas prices.

A 2009 poll conducted for Building America’s Future found that 60 percent of people think the federal gas tax is increased every year. It has remained unchanged – at 18.4 cents per gallon for gasoline and 24.4 cents per gallon of diesel – since 1993. It’s also not indexed for inflation, so as construction costs rise, the flat tax buys even less in infrastructure repairs and upgrades.

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News & Notes

Spokane: A very clear network map [Human Transit]

Human Transit looks at Spokane, Washington’s new system maps. The combined lines to create frequent service sectors would be apropo for RIPTA for places such as Elmwood Avenue and Charles Street.

In bicycle friendly D.C., going car-free is increasingly common [The Washington Post]

In urban areas nationwide, drivers younger than 24 drove six fewer miles a day in 2009 than in 1990. Drivers 25 to 34 drove almost 2.5 fewer miles a day.

“You don’t have to keep a car,” said Carroll, who takes Metro to work most days but walks the 2.4 miles occasionally on a nice day. “I love that the city is becoming more pedestrian-friendly and more bicycle-friendly. I can rent a bike and ride downhill all the way from work. I haven’t yet, but I’m going to.”

And Zipcar? She’s a longtime member who has never used a Zipcar.

“I have kept up my membership because you never know,” she said. “I might have a visitor who wants to take a trip to Middleburg or someplace. I think it’s a very valuable option.”

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Crowdsourcing the Improbable Providence Subway Map

Map Key

Providence Subway Map Key

You may remember a couple years ago I was all excited about the fake Cape Cod subway map by Transit Authority Figures. I know have a print of that map hanging in my home office.

Shortly after that Robert Stewart, the creator of the Cape Cod and a collection of other small town improbable subway maps contacted me. He was looking to do slightly less improbable subway maps and wanted to start with Providence. After being waylayed a bit on the project, Robert now has a draft of his Providence subway map that he is working on finalizing.

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Greater Greater Washington Metro Map Contest

If you’re like me, you love maps (and ice cream, and gin & tonic, and Law & Order UK). And if you love maps, you’re gonna love the DC Metro Map redesign contest being hosted at Greater Greater Washington.

Metro is working now on new Silver Line service which will eventually reach Dulles Airport in Virginia also, new rush hour services are being introduced. These changes prompted the redesign contest.

You can see all the entries on their Contest Page (voting is closed), and see the first two posts on winners in different categories here and here.


Rhode Island Bikeways Map

Speaking of bike paths…

This post may not actually work, first time I’ve tried to host a .kmz file to embed a map on the site, so if nothing shows up on this map, well then, nevermind.

A reader forwarded me a .kmz file he created of the Rhode Island bike network (map key over there on the right). You can download the file here. If the Google Maps embed below does not work, you can download the .kmz file and open it with Google Earth to view the map.

View Larger Map


Sometimes, you get a map

Bus Tunnel Map

Way back in February I wrote about the need for a map at the bottom of the bus tunnel to tell you where all those buses zooming through it are going to. I even doodled up a little map as a suggestion for what such a map should look like.

When RIPTA contacted me the other day to let me know they were hanging a map, I was pleased. When I went down to check it out last night, I saw that it was my map they hung. 🙂

Bus Tunnel Map

Along with the map, they’ve hung a handy schedule.

Now I think I might should get to drawing some more maps.


News & Notes

2 year closure of Union Avenue Bridge over Route 10 prompts free RIPTA service for pedestrians impacted by closure [ProJo]. With Route 18 only running 17 times on weekdays and not at all on Sundays and Holidays, I’m glad I don’t live on the farside of Union Avenue.

Four Projects to Watch (And Seven Others to Remember) [NewportNow]

Not About the Buildings Spelling Bee June 21st, AS220.

City panel to decide on rezoning Allens Avenue [PBN]

Topological crime maps of San Franscisco [Strange Maps]


Sometimes, you need a map

Map by Jef Nickerson

Update 02/25: RIPTA has seen this post and read the comments. They are working on a map/better info system for the bottom of the bus tunnel.

The other night I was standing at the bottom of the bus tunnel waiting for a bus to take me up to Wayland Square. Problem is, though I live here, and though I know RIPTA really well, I wasn’t positive which buses went to Wayland Square. I knew the trolley went close, but I didn’t know if it was after the period it stops running to Eastside Market (I would have been ever so annoyed to get dropped off in the middle of Fox Point).

I know the 35 goes to Rumford and the 40 goes to Butler and both go through the square. I had forgotten about the 78 though, which runs to Pawtucket via East Providence.

I had my iPhone with me so I could have figured it out, and I could have just asked the driver if they went to Wayland Square, but wouldn’t it be nice if there was some way for me to know, like a map or something? The tunnel carries all the bus traffic to the East Side, so a map like the one I just whipped together above, is pretty easy to put together.

A simple map shows the casual transit user or city visitor which buses go where. All go to Thayer Street, easy. Three go to Wayland Square. One goes to Hope Village…

I threw this map together pretty quick. A more comprehensive map would have shaded areas showing points of interest such as Brown University, Hope Village, Wickenden Retail District, India Point Park… A little walking time marker between Eastside Market and Wayland Square would be useful to show that they are almost on top of each other. Another walking time from the trolley to India Point Park. I’d also include another panel with a list of destinations, which buses service them, and bus travel time to them. A time table for each bus would also be very very very helpful (but let’s not get crazy here).

Maybe I should just laminate this and tape it to the wall at the bus tunnel.


Better RIPTA maps


I was looking up a RIPTA route online today and I found the above map on the page for the Route 31 schedule. As you can see, this is an actual geographically accurate map, you can see where the stops are in the real world. Not the annoying line maps they had before:


Thank Jeebus! I all the time had to have a Google Map open and the RIPTA map and try to compare the two and figure out which street was where… They seem not to be rolled out to all schedules yet, but I like the direction.

MBTA bus maps have been like this forever, but the MBTA maps still go one step further than the new RIPTA maps. The MBTA maps have other bus lines on them, so you can see which routes go nearby your destination. Looking at the the RIPTA map at the top of the page, you wouldn’t know that the Route 30 bus goes through the Brewery Parkade area.


But looking at this MBTA map, you can see that the 57 and 57A go to Oak Square, but so does the 64, 501, and 503.