Sunday, November 21, 2004

Thank me now, use this later -

Even for a seasoned New York resident like myself, getting around can be complicated (well, not really).

You can't really tell the cross street or the neighborhood from just looking at Avenue addresses, and while Mapquest directions can be helpful, they're for drivers, so they'll send you around the block if there's a one-way street (there are a couple of those in Manhattan) and they don't take public transport into consideration. And the MTA website doesn't have a Trip Planner feature like a lot of other systems do.

Well, featured in this week's Time Out New York is a site that does exactly that, I tried it out and I approve. It's an excellent resource that was way overdue.

(click here to continue)It's pretty simple. Just as on Mapquest, you enter the starting address/intersection and the destination address/intersection (and the site covers all 5 boroughs, which is nice since neighborhoods are harder to locate in the outer boroughs.

It gives you turn-by-turn and stop-by-stop directions in text, and a walking map to and from the subway stop, like so:

So here's what I liked:
- Option to choose between "More walking/less transfers" and "Less walking/more transfers"
- Option to include crosstown buses
- Easier to read map and text directions than Mapquest/Yahoo Maps
- Includes street transfers (i.e. going from F/V/B/D to Uptown 6 at Bleecker/Broadway-Lafayette

My wishlist
- Downtown/uptown buses for subway deprived neighborhoods on the East Side
- Incorporating weekend/late night service changes

So my complaints are minor and it's a fantastic site overall. I just wish they had this when I first came to NYC.

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