A nation of prewalkers


Moscow metro, originally uploaded by JasonRogers.

Like most people in the metropolis called Moscow, I commute to work every day. This involves some work and planning on my part to make the trip from point X to point Y as close as possible.

Kottke once posted about prewalking, where you try to game the subway by getting on at the ‘head’ or the ‘tail’ of the train. In Moscow it’s less of a sport and more of a necessity — during the rush hour, the onrush of bodies will wear you down if you get out at the wrong end of the train and have to make your way to the far end of the platform.

Moscow is set up in such a way that 99% of the time the maximum number of lines you have to ride on is 2. This means that you have to be smart about prewalking for transfers too. Consider it a mathematical exercise; with over 100 stations and 10+ lines, where’s a spot where you have to use more than two lines to get to where you’re going? You can review the map here to see what I’m talking about.

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