What If Every Single Train Map Was Designed By The Same Person?

What If Every Single Train Map Was Designed By The Same Person?

Transit maps are as unique as the cities they represent. To know Tokyo’s subway, you have to know the quirks of its subway map; to navigate New York City, you have to familiarise yourself with its mapping idiosyncrasies too. But what if design was standardised across every city in the world?

That’s the idea behind INAT, a project by Paris-based architect Jug Cerovic. On his website, Cerovic has taken the time to redesign a dozen of the world’s most-used transit diagrams, from China to Mexico, in his own house style. And what style is that, exactly? He lays it all out for us: From a standardised set of symbols to represent stations and connections, to the spectrum of lines and geometries allowed within his system.

The idea, he says, is to make maps easier to understand at a glance for everyone, regardless of the city they’re in. Here’s New York:

And Beijing:

Meanwhile, London:

And notoriously difficult-to-comprehend Tokyo:

Of course, the vagaries of your city’s subway map are probably part of what endears it to you. Under Cerovic’s supervision, we’d all be using the same system — and, while it would certainly be easier, it would probably also be less fun. [INAT; designboom]