Neat nerd site for you. The world’s subway systems presented on the same scale. (We’ve pasted in SF, London, Paris and New York above, for comparison.)
As well as a disingenuous means of mocking the French for their capital’s pea-sized hairy testicle of a network, it’s also fun to treat the site as an underground Rorschach test. So what does Londonist see? Brussels is but a little ant, LA is some kind of elemental pagan symbol, Moscow is just plain scary, while Boston looks like a screaming man on fire. And Madrid, for some reason, makes us think of autopsy tables.
Erstwhile Londonista Greg sent us the link, but offers the following note of caution:
See, they've really cheated, kind of a lot, with SF. The BART system, as its name (Bay Area Rapid Transit) implies, was from the start designed to be a unique hybrid between an intra-city subway and a suburban commuter rail. (Thence its unique gauge, its impossibly huge per-mile construction costs, etc.) So the routes shown go far, far from San Francisco proper – all the way to Fremont and Richmond and Bay Point and Millbrae. At the same time, he's just included the tiny Market Street branch of the Muni Metro, presumably since it’s the only part that’s totally underground. There is actually a great deal more to that system (completely independent from and incommensurate with BART) that he doesn’t include. He also leaves out the cable cars, but that's more defensible.
So, caveats aside, which is your favourite subway shape? And what do they remind you of?