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Underground

The Brian Lehrer Show

Behold the Fulton Center Oculus

Monday, November 10, 2014

The transit hub in lower Manhattan is open to commuters today, and it features an atrium that brings light down into the station. The MTA Arts & Design director tells us how it works. 

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New Sounds

"Underground" Music

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Listen to music made in or about the underground – catacombs, cisterns, cellars- on this New Sounds. Hear works by Ken Field, Paul Dresher, and Q2 Music's own Hannis Brown.

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New Sounds

"Underground" Music

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Listen to music made in or about the underground – catacombs, cisterns, cellars- on this New Sounds.  There’s music by sax player, percussionist, and a composer for Sesame Street - Ken Field from his release “Subterranea,” recorded in several underground rooms in Roswell, New Mexico.  Ranging from overdubbed saxophones, 'sticks on juice cans, sticks on suitcase' and lots of percussion, the pieces include titles like “Five Saxophones in Search of Meaning” and “Om On the Range.”

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Underneath New York

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Vanity Fair international correspondent, William Langewiesche, talks about his exploration of New York's underground infrastructure in the latest issue of Vanity Fair.

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Transportation Nation

Photos and Videos: Eye Candy Celebrating the London's Underground's 150 Anniversary

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

On January 9, 2013, the world's first underground journey took place in London.

A lithograph of Baker Street Station on Metropolitan Railway (Image courtesy of London Transport Museum)

According to the London Transport Museum:

The original Underground line was built and financed by the Metropolitan Railway, a private company which had been formed in 1854 to undertake the project to link the mainline stations at Paddington, Euston and King’s Cross with the City centre business district to the east.

Travelling on the new railway was a novelty that thousands of Londoners were eager to experience and on the first day of public service – long queues formed at every station. The line was a huge success with 26,000 passengers using the railway each day in the first six months.

A view of the platform at the Victoria station (Image courtesy of London Transport Museum)

 

In 1969, Queen Elizabeth opened a section of the Victoria Line and actually took the controls. According to press reports, it was her second time riding the Tube.

(Image courtesy of London Transport Museum)

 

But she didn't just ride. The queen apparently also took the controls.

 

Carriage 353 was a  four-wheeled first class carriage built in 1892.  Amazingly, it had been "relegated to use as a garden shed." Check out a video of its history -- and restoration process -- below.

Metropolitan Carriage 353, pausing between test runs at Quorn Station (image courtesy of London Transport Museum)

 

Here's what the interior of a 1938 car looked like:

 (Image courtesy of London's Transport Museum)

 

 

To celebrate the 150th anniversary, Google UK blessed its site with an Underground-themed Doodle.

Google Doodle

 

Today, Transport for London estimates around 3.5 million journeys are made on the network each day, across 11 lines serving 270 stations.

 

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New Sounds

"Underground" Music

Friday, October 05, 2012

WNYC

Listen to music made in or about the underground – catacombs, cisterns, cellars- on this New Sounds.  There’s music by sax player, percussionist, and a composer for Sesame Street - Ken Field from his release “Subterranea,” recorded in several underground rooms in Roswell, New Mexico.  Ranging from overdubbed saxophones, 'sticks on juice cans, sticks on suitcase' and lots of percussion, the pieces include titles like “Five Saxophones in Search of Meaning” and “Om On the Range.”

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Transportation Nation

London Olympics: Pink Means Go (SLIDESHOW)

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

London's transportation network has survived the first workday of the Olympic Games -- and, according to one transit user, is well organized. And colorful.

WNYC's Kathleen Ehrlich is in London this week, so we've tasked her to be TN's official Olympic transport correspondent. (Vacation time be damned!) She shared with us her impressions of the first weekday of the Games. "The system is crowded, but holding up," she says.

View a slideshow of photos from the London Olympics (all photos by Steven Z. Ehrlich)

Kathleen says the flow of foot traffic on the rail system is being carefully controlled. "Many routes were adjusted so that at certain busy stations you can only get on or get off at certain parts of the day," she says, "or you can only enter or exit through certain entrances." And there's a lot of help for transit riders. "Tube stations/train stations are staffed with large numbers of volunteers as well as extra workers," she says. "The people helping out have been cheerful and knowledgeable. The system is spotlessly clean. Workers are giving people free rides on the tube if people are having issues with their Oysters and getting them on their way is taking priority over making sure everyone is paying."

If there are issues, it's easy to ID help. The four official colors of the 2012 Olympics are pink, blue, green and orange -- colors that, according to the official website, "were carefully chosen to communicate the spirit of the London 2012 Games: energetic, spirited, bright and youthful."

Not to mention unmissable.

(photo by Steven Z. Ehrlich)

"It stands out," says Kathleen. "Nothing else is fuchsia. So as soon as you see it, you know it's about the Olympics and likely about travel."

So far, the transit system seems to be keeping people off the roads. Boris Johnson, London's mayor, told ITV that "we've been able to turn off a lot of the Games lanes because so many people are going by public transport."

 

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Features

Mapping out New York City's Best Underground Music

Monday, June 25, 2012

Back in May, WNYC asked listeners to help us map out the city's best underground music by snapping shots and sending in video clips of favorite subway performances. And you delivered. We've made a map from the submissions, which include a classical-rock violinist playing in the West 4th Street-Washington Square station, a group of opera singers in Times Square and a trio covering Stevie Wonder on the Upper East Side.

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New Sounds

"Underground" Music

Friday, June 08, 2012

Listen to music made in or about the underground – catacombs, cisterns, cellars- on this New Sounds.  There’s music by sax player, percussionist, and a composer for Sesame Street - Ken Field from his release “Subterranea,” recorded in several underground rooms in Roswell, New Mexico.  Ranging from overdubbed saxophones, 'sticks on juice cans, sticks on suitcase' and lots of percussion, the pieces include titles like “Five Saxophones in Search of Meaning” and “Om On the Range.” 

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Transportation Nation

TN MOVING STORIES: Detroit's Furious Bus Riders, NYC Taxis To Remove "Off-Duty" Signs, LA To Get More Bikeways

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Top stories on TN:
Transit, Jobs, Construction Noise: Rockland Residents Air Worries About Swiftly Approaching Tappan Zee Bridge Project (Link)
Transit Museum Forum on Back of the Bus is TONIGHT (Link)
NY City Council Bill Would Up Electric Bike Fine (Link)
Study: Only 28 Percent of Neighborhoods Affordable (Link)
As GOP Struggles in Michigan, Obama Chortles — Says Fuel Efficient Cars Will Save $8000 (Link)
New Prospect Park Drive: Defined Lanes, Less Room for Cars (Link)

A Detroit bus stop. (By Flickr user JSmith Photo)

House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman John Mica thinks that critics who believe Congress can pass a better transportation bill next year are “smoking the funny weed.” (Politico)

Detroit transit riders are outraged over huge bus cuts -- and the mayor's hiring of a private contractor to manage the city's troubled transportation department -- and plan to seek federal help in reversing the mayor's decisions. (Detroit Free Press)

New York Times editorial: the proposed Tappan Zee greenway "could be a splendid public attraction." (Link)

NYC cabs will have to start removing their taxi-top 'off-duty' signs to make way for the new system: available if the medallion number is lit, or unavailable if it’s dark. (New York Daily News)

Rules requiring rear-view video cameras in cars have been delayed again. (AP via Yahoo Finance)

Megabus' weighty double-decker coaches, currently being investigated by New York's Department of Transportation, have run afoul of authorities from Canada to Maryland. (DNA Info)

Worried Democrats want Obama to tap the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to lower gas prices. (The Hill)

The mayor of London said some lines on the Underground would have driverless trains in two years. (Telegraph)

Commercial truck traffic on the NJ Turnpike has declined by 7.5%; high fuel prices and last month's toll hike are cited as possible reasons why. (Star-Ledger)

Nearly five months after a $50 million HOT lane project opened in metro Atlanta, drivers remain dubious, the impact on traffic is unclear, and many questions remain unanswered. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

830 miles of new bikeways have been approved for Los Angeles County. (LAist)

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Transportation Nation

TN Moving Stories: Copenhagen To Open Bike Superhighways, and the Return of the Roosevelt Island Tram

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

More on the FTA demanding repayment of $271 million in ARC Tunnel money from New Jersey Transit in the Wall Street Journal.

Construction company Schiavone, which has worked on the subway stations at Times Square and South Ferry, admitted that it defrauded government programs and evaded federal minority hiring requirements. (New York Times)

Copenhagen to open bike "superhighways," which will hopefully alleviate the "two-wheeler traffic jams (which) are especially regular on the main Noerrebrogade thoroughfare used by around 36,000 cyclists a day." (Grist)

Lufthansa says it will begin using biofuel on a daily flight beginning next year. (Alt Transport)

RadioBoston looks at a new interactive map that shows all of Boston's reported bike crashes.

London Underground employees take part in another 24-hour strike--and say that walkouts could escalate in 2011. (BBC)

In Pakistan, trucks aren't just vehicles--they're art. (World Vision via WBEZ)

Some cities are testing a new network-based approach to parking. "Streetline...mounts low-cost sensors in parking spaces, retrofits existing meters and ties them into a mesh wireless network to draw a real-time picture of the spaces available, the cars needing tickets and how much to charge for parking." (Wired)  One of those places is Roosevelt Island, which may also begin its own bike share program. (DNA Info)

Speaking of all things R.I., the Roosevelt Island tram returns to service today. Just to be on the safe side, pack some lunch and forego drinking liquids 12 hours before boarding.

The Nissan Leaf wins the 2011 European Car of the Year designation. Take that, Chevy Volt! (USA Today)

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Studio 360

Design for the Real World: London Underground Map

Friday, October 15, 2010

London's old, intensely convoluted subway required a new kind of map that broke the rules of cartography. Chris Spurgeon explains why the 1931 Underground map was copied from Tokyo to Chicago.

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Studio 360

360 Staff Pick: Underground

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Serbian director Emir Kusturica’s black comedy Underground follows a group of Yugoslavians who flee to their cellar at the outbreak of WWII. The surreal storyline mixes black humor, unique characters, a raucous soundtrack and stunning imagery. Coming on the heels of the modern Balkan War, the film won ...

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