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JJason Recognition
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Misuse of Maps by JJason Recognition

March 19th, 2008 2:56 PM

INSTRUCTIONS: Navigate a city or region using maps that do not represent that space.
For example, you can use a map of Central Park to traverse Loving County, Texas, or a map of the London Underground to find your way through SF MOMA.

Compare your expectations with your experiences.

If I hadn't been able to dérive in the lifeless, soulless, highway fueled outer-ring shopping arcologies for some reason, my close second choice for locations of intense Psychogeographic weirdness in the Twin Cities would definitely be the skyway system. For those of you not in the know, downtown Minneapolis and Saint Paul both have an extensive skyway system, tunnels one floor above the street connecting the sky scrapers in a fairly random fashion. This is because it gets cold here and nobody wants to go outside, ever, if they can help it. I have always found them to be incredibly weird. There's no sort of overarching pattern in their arrangement, so it's easy to get stuck in corners with no way out, and the insides of each building aren't arranged with making skyway travel convient, so it's easy to get lost within each building while trying to make your way across. You can only see the the street while you're travelling through the skyway's and the hallways within the buildings twist and turn randomly so I always end up losing any sort of orientation while I'm in there. The place is weird. Some people say that the Skyways are killing downtown Minneapolis, but others disagree.

Given that the skyways are weird, lovecraftian, city killing, monstrosities, I came to the conclusion that I needed to do some tasking in them. Misuse of maps seemed like a perfect choice. For my map I chose a map that is near and dear to my heart: the MBTA subway map. For a route I chose my morning commute from when I was a wee high school student. The story of journey is told in the pictures.

Expectation vs. Experiences: The Minneapolis Skyway version of the MBTA seems to be plagued by frequent breakdowns. I ended up having to take a fairly elaborate route to get my final destination. It's also a lot harder to navigate. And I had to walk, instead of being able to sit and read the whole way. But I did get to my final destination, which I had some doubt that I'd succeed in doing on the outset of the project. So I'd recommend doing your morning commute in Boston via the Minneapolis sky ways only if you really have to.

- smaller

Map

Map

The Map I printed out of the MBTA


Start

Start

I start at Alewife Station.


End

End

And end at Copley Station


Alewife Station

Alewife Station

I get off the bus at Alewife Station, so Alewife station must be where I get off the bus. Stands to reason.


Access

Access

Use my Charlie Card to gain access to the subway.


Leaving

Leaving

Now leaving Alewife Station


Davis Square

Davis Square

Davis Square has a weird geometry to it.


Tunnel

Tunnel

Between Davis and Porter


Porter

Porter

Porter Square Station is notable for it's giant escalators.


Harvard Square Station

Harvard Square Station

These machines reminded me of the ticket machines in Harvard Square.


Central... ?

Central... ?

I thought this was central square, but it was a dead end. Maybe I had gotten lost at some point.


Map

Map

I checked my map and back tracked.


Central

Central

Now I get it - the subway curves a little at this point. I must've been in some forgotten corner of Harvard station or something. This must be Central.


Central

Central

Yes, that's much more like Central station. Back on track.


Tunnel

Tunnel

Between Central and Kendall


Kendall Square

Kendall Square

Kendall Square is very similar to Central Square.


Kendall

Kendall

I like Kendall Square better though.


Bridge

Bridge

The train cross the river and goes above ground between Kendall and Charles/MGH


River

River

The Charles river.


Charles/MGH

Charles/MGH

A not very impressive station, if you ask me.


Bridge

Bridge

Between Kendell and Park. You can see a bit of Boston here.


Park Street

Park Street

Time to get off the Red Line and get on the Green line.


Park Street

Park Street

Only the Green line seemed to be shut down or something. I wasn't entirely clear. This is the bit of the story where the non-euclidean nature of the sky ways began to get to me.


Downtown Crossing?

Downtown Crossing?

Now what I think I did is get back on the red line and take it to Downtown Crossing.


Chinatown

Chinatown

From Downtown Crossing I got on the Orange Line and took it to Chinatown.


Chinatown

Chinatown

Then from Chinatown I got on the Silver Line, which I am only 74% sure actually exists and isn't a product of fevered imagination.


Silver Line?

Silver Line?

Something about this picture fills me with incredible dread. I have only the vaguest idea of where it came from and why it is here. It scares me.


Silver Line?

Silver Line?

I, presumably, saw this thing. I mean, how else could I have photographed it?


Boylston!

Boylston!

But then I was at Boylston station. Hooray!


Tunnel

Tunnel

From there it was just a quick trip on the Green Line to my destination. (I apparently forgot to photograph Arlington station. My apologies to all of you Arlington station fans out there)


Copley

Copley

At Copley I got off the train


Copley

Copley

Passed through the turnstile


Out

Out

And out into the day.



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2 comment(s)

(no subject)
posted by Flitworth on March 19th, 2008 6:51 PM

Nicely done and a lovely choice, though my heart breaks whenever I'm reminded how far I am from Boston.

(no subject)
posted by JJason Recognition on March 19th, 2008 9:24 PM

You're a bit farther than I am, but nonetheless: you and me both.