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One problem that often arises with end stations is that travel patterns often change after the station is built so that end stations are no longer at the end of the area people are commonly traveling to.

The result is you either have to have extra connections and long travel times for through riders, or another set of transit routes that simply bypasses the station entirely.

The former option causes people that would have to travel through the station to complain that transit takes 3 times as long as driving and not ride. The latter option leads to a confusing mess of peak-only routes and all-day routes with long headways.

Alon Levy

What about stations that are elevated? You'd still have to climb down steps to reach the final destination, but you'd be going up toward the train.

Bob R.

This reinforces a belief I have about a phenomenon I have observed anecdotally... in shopping malls, airports, etc. where there are multiple levels, it is not socially inappropriate to stand on an upper level and look down at the people below, but if you are on the lower level, stand in one spot, and stare at people on the upper level, they will move away, get angry, stare back at you with a puzzled look, etc. One should always stare down, never up!

I wonder if this has something to do with an evolutionary preference for hunters to look down on their prey, to be able to pounce, etc.?


The underground passages are probably to preent "marring" of the asthetics of the openness of the design of the trainshed. It's from the architect's view, not from the user's view.

And for wholly undergound stations, it's probably cheaper.

On Vancouver's Canada Line, a couple of underground stations - 41st-Oakridge and 49th-Langara have underpasses to switch platforms. That's probably because it was cheaper to excavate and build a narrow underground passage rather than lower the entire station (and guideway approaches) to allow headroom for an overhead mezzanine. Broadway-City Hall has an overhead mezzanine, but it takes advantage of the nature slope of the land at the station site to accommodate the mezzanine. Otherwise, each of the stations is only a a couple of feet below the street surface.


What goes up, must come down. Whatever effect elevation change has on the arrival experience will presumably be reversed in the departure experience.


Bob R., that is interesting!

And yes, the original post make sense. There's something "wrong" about being led down to a "dungeon"/


Very interesting, it is also believed people in general go down easier than up in buildings. Compare to:

Why, for instance, are so many malls, like Short Hills, two stories? Back at his office, on Fifth Avenue, Taubman took a piece of paper and drew a simple cross-section of a two-story building. “You have two levels, all right? You have an escalator here and an escalator here.” He drew escalators at both ends of the floors. “The customer comes into the mall, walks down the hall, gets on the escalator up to the second level. Goes back along the second floor, down the escalator, and now she’s back where she started from. She’s seen every store in the center, right? Now you put on a third level. Is there any reason to go up there? No.” A full circuit of a two-level mall takes you back to the beginning. It encourages you to circulate through the whole building. A full circuit of a three-level mall leaves you at the opposite end of the mall from your car. Taubman was the first to put a ring road around the mall—which he did at his mall in Hayward—for the same reason: if you want to get shoppers into every part of the building, they should be distributed to as many different entry points as possible. At Short Hills—and at most Taubman malls—the ring road rises gently as you drive around the building, so at least half of the mall entrances are on the second floor. “We put fifteen per cent more parking on the upper level than on the first level, because people flow like water,” Taubman said. “They go down much easier than they go up. And we put our vertical transportation—the escalators—on the ends, so shoppers have to make the full loop.”

Read more http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2004/03/15/040315fa_fact1#ixzz1J6ndhiIu


A reno in a pretty dreary environment in Toronto. Makes more sense to me to span an overpass over the tracks and descend to the platforms rather than continuing to use the sidwalk passages through the rail underpass as the main entrances.


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