Thursday 21 November 2013

An Infestation of Spiders [Part 5]

Particular problems!

fbb has been taking afternoon tea with Diane Aggram, a retired cartographer. She dislikes Transport for London's [TfL] "spider" maps, and, prompted by fbb, has suggested techniques whereby they could be improved, using as an example that for South End Green. After some initial advice and a considered framework, she has suggested that fbb should finish the job. The original looks like this ...
... and, so far, Diane has produced this ...
... and encouraged fbb to go home and finish it.


fbb looks at Camden Town with horror ...
... and wonders how to tackle that particular area. Separating out the three bus routes from South End Green ...
 ... illustrates the whole problem delightfully (?). Northbound, the 24 and 168 stop reasonably conveniently for Camden Town ( Northern ), although the station hides itself quite well in the "v" of Chalk Farm Road and Kentish Town Road.
Southbound, you alight in Camden Road (that's the road Camden Road not the station) just before the routes turn one-way south into Bayham Street ...
... and walk forward to the junction.

For Camden Road Station ( Overground ), it's easy on the northbound 46 because it stops just beyond an obvious railway bridge.
stop just past white vehicle : Station left, under bridge

Southbound there is also a bridge, but not at the station.
This stop, tagged Camden Gardens, is used by all thee routes. You walk forward, turn left into Bonny Street (a useful "short cut" not shown on the TfL stops map for Camden) ...
... at the end of which you might just spot Camden Road Station; but you have to look carefully!
But the 46 is generally not too easy for Camden Town, likewise the 24 and 168 northbound are well hidden from Camden Road.

In the end, fbb chickened and compromised by showing he 46 as "ideal" for Camden Road and the 24 and 168 as serving Camden Town. He added a dotted line (later with stick man) to show that the distance between them was easily "walkable".
It would be possible to get Camden Road nearer to Camden Town but that would have added another wiggle to the overground line ...
... and the 46. It's all about compromise! But, arguably, a better compromise than Transport for London's efforts ...
... which completely ignores the interchange possibilities with Camden Road station and knits the 46 around the 24 and 168 in an ugly and unhelpful manner. Dispatching Camden Road into a wilderness may have been OK when the North London Line was seedy, run down and largely devoid of passengers except at peak times, BUT now?
In the early 60s even the Saturday timetable only managed to heave itself up to a twenty minutes frequency by late morning. Departures from Richmond : 0928, 0945, 1002, 1025, 1055 ...
... 1125, 1140, 1158, 1213.
Even adding in the long-removed service from Watford Junction, the times were hardly "clock-face".

But now it's shiny new overground ...
... with trains every ten minutes, it needs more recognition.
An additional investment in extra capacity is being proposed because Overground passenger figures are rising sharply and are projected to increase by another 25 per cent within a decade. TfL says passenger numbers have risen from 33 million** a year on the former Silverlink Metro network to 88 million now. The TfL Business Plan envisages the lengthening of all 57 Class 378 units to five cars from the December 2014 timetable. There may also be up to five additional trains, which would again be of five cars. 

fbb will present his and Diane's version of the finished "spider" tomorrow.

** Figures for the pre-privarisation super seedy days are not easily available.

Previous spider sequence; 1 (here), 2 (here) and 3 (here)

 Next (and last - phew!) spider blog : Friday 22nd November 

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