Map design, tube and retail

Harry Beck's 1933 tube map design has changed, but is still intrinsically the same nicely designed concept. Travelling on the tube is becoming less than pleasant, with journey numbers on the increase at peak times.

Tube strikes and continual engineering works (on most lines) every weekend and bank holidays are getting worse. In order to stay open for the 2012 olymic games (and the anticipated tourists), Londoners journeys sometimes have to be planned with military precison, with a Plan B in case of disruption from adverse weather, engineering works, signal failures, strikes and suspicious shopping left behind.

It wouldn't surprise me, if together with the recession, the worse December weather for 100 years, and pension fund troubles, that some of the UK's retailers (probably HMV, JJB sports, Dixons retail), whose London sales are vital, are forced into administration in January or February 2011. I was even more than a little surprised at finding one of WHSmith's London stores almost empty on christmas eve.

Perhaps what London needs is a newly designed ‘Alternative travel’ map – with London's ferry's; key bus routes (not all as this would be confusing) and perhaps even the larger cycling hire docking areas.