Wednesday, 21 March 2012


London is certainly a big city. Its transport network expands towards the most remote place on the outskirts, yet it has to carry the equivalent of its extension in number of passenger.

There is no day that we have the daily reminder of how overcrowded the system already is, and how close it is to the edge of absolute chaos and destruction. Destruction.

Underground system in which some of the stations, the clients, the commuters, have to be managed to literally flow along the corridors just like a fluid would do in a pipe. Narrow victorian tunnels added to the small platforms do not allow the current volume of traffic at certain hours of the day, which by the way, those hours are dangerously increasing being almost all day long. Cages are closed, flow is diverted so that the way to the platform takes longer to walk. Pipes again. Straight away, it comes to my mind the famous Bernoully´s Principle. Laminar and turbulent flow. Flow should be laminar on the tube.

But it is one little disruption, a slight change of plan, and the domino effect starts. Starts every morning, and its where gamblers should really bet on: which line is going to be disrupted today?

It is therefore, of paramount importance, that the usual London commuter may be able to engineer, without a hint of doubt (although the use of gadgets is allowed), at least 3 different routes to reach their destination. Only long-months-breeded species can appreciate the fact that not only just one line will fail in the morning. Chances are, there is always at least 2 lines with ´Severe Delays´.

And here is the tricky part: A Londoner´s commuting time tends to be extensive, not because of the distance to cover, but for the planned Cushion time prepared for the case of a contingency.

Turns out that after careful engineering, said fellow commuters end up arriving probably at least 20 minutes early on daily basis. But the inability to dispose them at any occasion may result in total disaster. Destruction. Again.

And its funny that some of us, probably most of us, end up choosing our preferred location to live in accordance to our commuting needs, rather than because we like the area. Decisions like this are ruled by the number of Underground Lines and 24 four hours buses stopping at your front door.

Because in this case, more is more. More is better.

I need to move out.

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