Take The … Train To Harlem

If you want to subway into or out of Harlem, the MTA’s new on line interactive subway diagram designed by Massimo Vignelli, Beatriz Cifuentes and Yoshiki Waterhouse for The Weekender Web site of the M.T.A. is a must.

While the map is now a digital experience like no other, it’s origins date back to  1972, when Vignelli (who turned 80 this year) designed a dramatically  new map of geographically accurate train routes.  It consisted of simple, bold bands of color-coded angular routes with stops indicated by black dots.   The map was  included in the design collection of the Museum of Modern Art.  In 2008, Vignelli created a limited-edition version which sold out almost immediately.  In 2010 the MTA asked Vignelli to revise his map for the M.T.A.’s The Weekender Web site.

Try It Here Now!

Click on the image below to try it here now.  For instance click on the Service Status link in the upper right hand corner.  Features include:

  • Click, zoom, pan or expand to full screen
  • Lines are shaded to indicate a weekend service interruption
  • Adjacent dots that make up each station light up to indicate a link, allowing users to navigate the system graphically.
  • System can be searched by station, line or borough
  • Every view of the diagram is complemented by a geographic neighborhood map, essentially giving riders a means of navigating the system both above and below ground

What We’d Like To See Next

One welcome enhancement we would like to see is the ability to select from a list of hot neighborhoods like Harlem and display the “best” route(s) into “the hood” as of that particular time.    If you have additional suggestions please share them here as replies to this post and we will submit them on our collective behalf to the MTA.

And if you have any friends in the US or outside the US planning to visit Harlem, please share this invaluable and iconic resource with them.

For More Information

Click here to read more about the amazing history behind the map.

Click here to use the map.

Click below for a book on Massimo’s work which includes a section on his iconic design.


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