The Underground – Part II

London is loud, large and laborious. The impossibly crowded streets and the superfluous directional signage make for an exciting and unnerving sensory overload. There is a staccato music to the loudness of London humming from the technology of the city and the hot air extracted from its citizens and transients.

It didn’t take me long to capture the footage I needed of the subway. There were some distinctive features of the architecture and culture of traveling via The Underground. London is a quite large city geographically with over 30 bouroughs and over 7 million (recorded) residents. It is a city that is rich in history and the arts that attracts thousands of tourists. There are 11 different lines of the subway system and it estimated that there are about 3.5 million journeys every weekday. There are 270 stations connected on the London Underground. The system is almost 150 years old and remains the core of the city’s heartbeat, a vital tool in transit throughout London.

The ticket system is split between kiosk machines and at some stations there are live agents that assist with ticket purchases. There are entry gates that are equipped with ticket readers and scanners that detect passes. For some stations it is required that you take an elevator (lift) to the platform, sometimes after which you may have to take stairs up or down to get to the train. There is abundant amount of signage, many telling you to “mind” this or that. There is a GPS notification system telling you when the next train will arrive.

The trains have doors that require you to press a button to open the door. The trains are quite loud and when taking the central line I found it to be quite rickety. When trying to record footage on my iPhone, I was rocking back and forth quite drastically, as were the passengers.

There is a loud bell that rings when the doors are closing and that synonymous British woman’s voice is constantly jabbering away.

The train cars are a bit claustrophobic and I didn’t notice any place for people to bring their bikes. The blaring bright red and blues are a little jarring at times but it is a fast and efficient system.


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