Londoners are frequently debating just how accessible public transport in the city really is. Around a third of Tube stations are recognised as being wheelchair friendly and TfL has a map demonstrating which stations are ‘step-free’. However, one Reddit user has now created a map which demonstrates which Underground stations are accessible alongside many other factors to make getting around the capital easier.
The creator, Parque_Bench, shared a design which combines a multitude of interesting facts about each station. According to the key, Londoners can also see on the map which stations are step-free. This means commuters can plan their travel from just one map accordingly.
They posted the design on May 3 under the Transit Diagrams thread and it has been upvoted 99 per cent. Other Reddit users debated the pros and cons of the current maps and came to the conclusion that the poster’s design, which is titled: “A New Map for London – Rail & River Services with Step Free access” is “wonderful”.
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Parque_Bench shared the art with caption: “Since the London Connections map was replaced with the current Rail & Tube Map I’ve never really liked it and always wanted to redesign it. So I have. Here are some notable things on the map.”
They go on to list the step-free factor included in the design. They wrote: “Step Free access info for all stations. Currently, you can only find this on the Tube (TfL Services) Map. While for National Rail services you must look on the NR Website, or check with each operator.”
The Reddit user also listed the following aspects of Tube travel on the map:
- Metro Area
- Individual DLR & Tram routes
- Overnight Services
- River Services
- Stations/Routes under construction/planned
- No direct services
According to their map, you can see Step Free Access to platform of the service from the street demonstrated with a light blue colour. In dark blue, you can see stations with Step Free Access and Level Boarding. Finally, in white, you can find stations where Step Free Access is not available to every platform.
Social media users found the map helpful, with one writing: “It really is yours? It’s simply wonderful.” Another called it an “interesting project”.
They added: “Looking closer I was disappointed because of how few stations are actually useable for a wheelchair user. I think it’ll be really interesting to see just how inaccessible London really is. Even when it’s really working, which it rarely is. The lift situation is weak.”
According to Tfl’s wheelchair access and avoiding stairs website, they have their own map which lists their definition of ‘step-free’. It states: “Step-free access means lifts, ramps and level surfaces so you don’t have to use stairs or escalators, and can avoid the step and gap onto our trains, buses and boats. Around a third of Tube stations, half of Overground stations, most piers, all tram stops, the Emirates Air Line and all DLR stations have step-free access.”
If lifts are out of service, TfL has another option for commuters. The website states: “If you arrive at a Tube, TfL Rail or Overground station and the lift is unavailable, staff will help you to plan an alternative journey to your destination.
“If there isn’t a reasonable alternative route, we’ll book you a taxi (at our cost) to take you to your destination or another step-free station from where you can continue your journey.”
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I’m Beth, a News Reporter for MyLondon, covering anything from TV and crime to human interest stories, with a particular focus on health causes. I’ve been nominated for an NCTJ Award for Excellence in the Data category.
Three stories I’ve worked on in the past month that I’m proud of are:
‘I just feel like screaming’: ‘Healthy’ woman, 28, can’t even leave her bed after being hit by paralysis, seizures, and memory loss
Woman, 38, fighting for her and baby’s life after pregnancy ‘side effect’ turns out to be cervical cancer
‘I was in so much pain I slept upright in a chair but was told I had to wait eight months for surgery’
I’m currently based near Hampstead but I’ll write about any area of the best place in the world. It’s been a dream of mine since I was tiny to live in London and I’m so grateful I get to call this hustling, bustling city my home.
Got a story? You can email me at email@example.com or DM me on Twitter @bethgulliver1.