Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Washington Metro


The Washington Metro is an excellent system. The trains are quiet and spacious compared to many other cities. The stations are intelligently laid out and transfers are easy. None of the long walks found in New York, Paris, Tokyo or London. It's cheap. The stations all have the same look, as you see here: concrete honeycomb rounded vaults, often much higher than they need to be, lit from beneath with very dim platforms. It is unusually quiet. A colleague wondered if it was designed for crowd control, to soothe the commuting masses. I find the stations at once spooky and magnificent.

If your system has a metro or subway, what are the esthetics like?

By the way, there is a folder of pictures I took in Washington on Flickr here.

TOMORROW: The Thursday Arch series takes a break. Instead, more from Washington.

7 comments:

Dusty Lens said...

Quite the asthetis system, very appealing.

No, we only have a small commuter train that travels from downtoen Minneapolis to Mall Of America in Bloomington. I suppose it does help those along the line, but does nothing for the west side of town, nor does it travel to St. Paul. Someday, perhaps.

Mo said...

I love the first shot.

Jackie said...

What great photos - I really get a sense of the huge space. Glasgow has an underground train system as well as the overland trains, but huge space isn't something you could accuse our underground of having. We call it the Clockwork Orange. They always make me laugh, they look like little toy trains, though that's probably because I used to live in London so that's how I still imagine tube trains to be like.

Karlis Beinerts said...

This is just a great example of an outstanding and user friendly design!
I would like to see and hear it myself, but in photo the station looks stunningly wonderful, :) if one can say so.

D.C. Confidential said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
D.C. Confidential said...

Nice pictures of our Metro system and interesting observations/praise for the same. Most of the folks who commute on Metro have a tendency to complain about all that is awful regarding this mass transit system: overcrowded trains, constant breakdowns, tourists who don't understand escalator etiquette (stand right, walk left), multi-jurisdictional bickering, fare increases and on and on. It's nice to hear something positive for a change! Hope you enjoyed visiting our city.

Ming the Merciless said...

Ahh...the unmistakeable Washington DC metro station. Love the photos.