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Signage improvements for MTA service changes

If you’ve ever ridden the New York City subway you’ll know the service interruption fliers are terrible. For any transit system experiencing redirects, there are four key messages that need to be conveyed: alert the riders to a change, provide a quick overview of that change, course correct any wayward travelers, and finally, guide riders through the hallways to the proper platforms. Currently, the MTA employs a single, densely packed sheet of 8.5×11” paper to convey an entire set of messaging. This is a problem worth solving.

I approached this problem with the aim to stretch out that messaging over the rider’s entire subway experience, from entering the station, to the turnstiles, to the platform and then onto the train itself. I devised a simple hack to the current station entrance and turnstile signage involving LEDs surrounding the train symbols, as well as the LED route boards on the new R160 trains, which would alert riders to service changes and cancellations. Once inside the station or on the platform during a transfer, riders would find redesigned fliers, which would include iconography, a strong information hierarchy, and a map of the service change. This is of course just a beginning, but hopefully these small changes would go a long way to making these changes a bit more digestible.