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The NYC Subway for beginners: Designer untangles the system’s map step by step

Written by
Howard Halle

Chances are you take the subway to the same places most of the time, which means you don’t have to think about where you’re going or how you’re going to get there. But using the subway map to chart a unfamiliar route can be daunting even for the most hardened New Yorker, since figuring it out is a lot like trying to decipher the Da Vinci Code. Now imagine what it’s like for tourists. You know how they seem lost all of the time? The subway map is one reason.

Enter Milo Beckman, a graphic designer who’s taken it upon himself to create a subway map explainer. He uses a series of simplified schematics that plot Manhattan’s subway lines bit by bit to show why the system is laid out the way it is. The idea is that once you grasp the pattern, you’ll find it easier to use the map. Hopefully, at some point, he’ll add Brooklyn and Queens 

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