Over the past several days, I have been getting reacquainted with the New York public transportation system, known as the MTA. I have been amazed at its speed and efficiency and ease of use. I have been continually impressed with the fact that it only takes a few minutes to get to rather far-flung places in the city, that the stations and cars seem clean, arrive often and are not overly crowded. Using their card system is incredibly efficient, whether or not you go with an unlimited or pay per ride card. And their trip planner is the best I’ve seen with the possible exception of London’s.
My friend Gabe was complaining the other day about the look of the metro stations, but I actually kind of dig the aesthetics. There is something utilitarian about them without them being artless. The brick and tile work in many of the stations is really sweet without being cute. The subway system isn’t trying to hide the fact that these are tunnels operating underground, the bowels of the city at work.