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Along with a major service revision in December 2019 that – amongst other things –closed the Almaden Shuttle light rail line, San Jose’s Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) also took the opportunity to introduce a new light rail map, shown here.
While it’s nothing outstanding, it’s clean, clear and easy to understand – which actually puts it ahead of quite a lot of other maps out there. I would like to see another use of the big curve on the Orange Line between Alder and Cropley somewhere else on the map: it just looks a little odd being the only instance on the map. As riders on the Orange Line are required to transfer to get downtown on the Blue or Green lines, it could be helpful for the map to indicate preferred transfer stations to make that as seamless as possible. Is Old Ironsides better, or is Champion? Or one of the others?
Best practices would also ask for the “O”, “G” and “B” bullets to be repeated at the ends of their respective lines to aid colour-blind users, and listing each line’s terminus stations in the legend would also be helpful. Speaking of the legend, I don’t see a single instance of the bike lockers icon on the actual map – oops!
Our final word: The previous VTA light rail map had a lovely little tilt to the left which mirrored the real world alignment of the lines from downtown up to Tasman, which I do miss on this new version. However, this one is cleaner and simpler, so I think it’s an improvement overall. 3 stars.
Source: VTA website
This article first appeared on www.transitmap.net
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