Paul1705 wrote:Very impressive. And rather discouraging that so little has been accomplished in recent decades. I believe New York had the only rapid transit system in the world that was shrinking in route mileage (in the period from 1960 to 1980).
Yes, but part of the point of showing service patterns was to illustrate how small construction projects like the Chrystie St and 63rd St connections, or even service changes without any construction, can bring significant improvements to the network. Not that these don't pale in comparison to the vast and sudden expansion of the Dual Contracts.
This is a matter of definition: would the New York, Westchester and Boston be classified as rapid transit or as a commuter railroad? I've usually seen it described as a railroad, but it may have had aspects of both.
The NYW&B ran local trains every 20 minutes off-peak (and express trains just as frequently). These local trains had stops that were much more closely spaced than on any of the other non-street-running commuter lines. Its right-of-way was entirely grade-separated, with elevated and subway sections just like the other rapid transit lines, and much of the area it served was already significantly urban when it opened. It is shown on this
contemporary map, along with the IRT, BMT and H&M but not the other commuter rail lines, indicating that people at the time also thought it belonged with the former more than the latter. It was a commuter railroad for legal and regulatory purposes, but so is PATH and it seems even clearer that PATH belongs on a rapid transit map. For all of these reasons it seemed best to include it in the timeline.