(P0) Looking Forward: NYC Subway Ridership

by jedmund @ 11:04 pm 12 January 2010


Looking around, I found a neat infographic showing how many riders ride each train like in New York City, by year, for the past 40 or so years. Having grown up in NYC, I’ve loved the subways since I was young, even though they’re gross. Regardless, I think that these kinds of infographics can be important from both a design and culture point-of-view.

If you look at this one in particular, you can see the evolution of the subway service. While it’s much older than the oldest date recorded, the addition of new lines and the responses to those new lines by the public can be seen, and it becomes kind of a neat history lesson. However, more interestingly, if you look at the variation in usage between certain lines over time, you can start to think about what is happening economically and socially in the neighborhoods that the line falls across. Perhaps there was some sort of economic stimulation in one year by a major corporation moving in, or maybe some sort of migration away happened because of some other reason. That kind of information becomes very interesting because it cues the user to maybe research more, and at the very least think more about the the information that is being presented to them, opposed to letting it come in one ear and go out the other.

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