METRO’s 2012 map is settling down. This update to CTC’s transit map shows only a few changes since my last update in April 2008:
- The University Line got realigned in the Third Ward. This is unfortunate; Texas Southern University now has no stop alongside campus. There is a station called “TSU,” but it’s three blocks from campus, on the opposite side of a public housing project. Rice, UH, St. Thomas, and UH Downtown all get excellent connections to the 2012 system, but TSU is getting left out because METRO couldn’t figure out how to work with a neighborhood to get a Wheeler/Ennis route figured out. That’s an unfortunate situation for a university that’s trying to raise its profile.
- Some stations changes. There’s additional stations in Uptown and the East End, but one fewer in Greenway.
- The East End Line now goes to the Theatre District, not the Intermodal Center. This is based on METRO’s newest diagramatic map. It makes a lot of sense. The Intermodal Center was never an important destination anyway; there’s a lot more demand to go to the west side of Downtown. Running both the East End and Southeast lines there creates a frequent east-wets circulator service across Downtown. And keeping East End trains off of Main Street allows Main Street trains to run more frequently. The transfer still isn’t ideal, though.
- The Uptown line is still shown as through-routed with the University Line but not the Main Street Line. We now have confirmation (pdf) that the track configuration where Uptown meets University will allow through running:
- I’ve removed commuter rail. With the new HGAC proposal, it seemed confusing to show the METRO proposal, but the HGAC proposal is indefinite enough that I can’t clearly map it. I still think commuter rail will happen (whether it;s a good idea or not) but at this point I’d suspect at will be post-2012.
The other changes are graphical:
- I’ve changed how I show two light rail lines sharing track, to clean things up.
- I’ve used dashed vs. solid lines to show which METROExpress lines have off-peak service and which don’t, and I’ve used thick vs. thin lines to show which sections are in HOV lanes and which are in regular traffic. I’ ve also added the TMC service. I am still not showing METRO park-and-ride service that does not use HOV lanes, which is why the East Freeway and the West Loop service isn’t here.
- I’m not showing Signature Bus. But that might change. Right now, I don’t have enough information on stops to show it properly.
- I’ve changed line colors to match the new METRO schematic map (small size here.) That affects only the Uptown Line; whether by coincidence or not, METRO seems to have chosen the same colors I did for East End, Southeast, and University.
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