Fun infographic comparing the top 5 transit systems in the US
This infographic has been created by the Masters in Public Administration degree program (in-class, online) at the University of North Carolina School of Government. Thank you!
I do think that the data presented isn't consistent across all the systems, and the data on "San Francisco" is incomplete because it only features BART, which mostly serves the suburbs and doesn't include data on MUNI which serves San Francisco. Plus it'd be good to include information on station density/square mile.
And it would be nice if they'd publish a second edition comparing the top three systems in Canada (Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver).
But the graphic is cool regardless.
I like it because the depth and breadth of transit service is key to the differentiation of center cities from suburbs and is key to a city's competitive advantage as a place to live, conduct business, locate business, visit, and be entertained. We need to better market transit on this dimension, just as automobile manufacturers constantly market the attractiveness of driving.
Transit enables density and density enables activity and exchange, and exchange is what drives life. According to David Engwicht:
“What is the city all about? The efficiency of exchange. There are two types of exchange, planned and spontaneous. For traffic engineers, planned exchanges can be translated as “trips”- this is the only focus of engineers. Spontaneous exchanges are known as exchanges for free- they don’t cost any more infrastructure- but they are almost impossible to measure.”And (from "David Engwicht: The Art of Placemaking"):
Instead of having to travel the world in search of consumables, cities act as a magnet attracting inwards the material delights of what the world has to offer. Cities, he says, ‘are a mechanism for maximising the diversity of exchanges while simultaneously minimising travel’. While there exists planned exchanges and unplanned exchanges, what ultimately drives the creative city and the economic vitality of the city is the spontaneous exchanges that it creates.