One of the biggest challenges to using transit in Cincinnati is understanding it. The new rider is presented with a complicated fare structure, and a mess of schedules and route maps so overwhelming and disconnected that most people who have the choice just give up. It doesn't have to be this way. Most other major cities have maps that are not only attractive but welcoming to new riders.
A good map makes it easy to see what's important. Highways don't look the same as local roads on a good street map and major transit lines shouldn't look the same as a bus that runs twice a day. Lines that run every 12 minutes-the transit equivalent of major arterial streets must be distinguished from inconvenient and specialized routes. These frequent routes are the backbone of Cincinnati's transit infrastructure, and understanding them is vital to riding the bus without unnecessary stress and delay.
This map reduces the system's current complication to a legible structure that is complex but interconnected, with an easily visible structure of primary, secondary, and tertiary routes. The map is laid out so that people who are new to riding the bus can quickly and easily see which line they need to take, how to take it, and most importantly how long they can expect to wait.
We already have the transit system in place. We need now to articulate it to people who haven't yet discovered it! Imagine a concise transit map being included in the welcome materials presented to incoming freshmen, handed to new corporate employees who are looking for a house, or hotel guests in town for a conference. It would help to totally change people's perception of the city as a second rate place where one needs a car to do anything. Convention center visitors would no longer be limited to downtown but would explore the neighborhoods at their leisure. People would more easily make decisions about where to locate a home or business. Students could get off campus to meet their neighbors in the city.
So here is where you come in! I am doing all the design work(with lot's of your input of course), and now I need money to get the maps printed and distributed around the city. We have reached the goal of $1,200-enough to print 30,000 pocket size maps. Money raised past the initial goal will be used to print poster sized maps to be put up around town in key locations and additional pocket size maps. SORTA alone claims 60,000 daily riders and tens of thousands of people visit Cincinnati each year with no idea how to ride the bus. We need a lot of maps to reach all of these potential riders!
The maps will be printed on durable paper and will fold into a 3.7" square for convenient carrying. The back side of the map will display downtown stop locations and important notes on each route. The map is issued under a Creative Commons attribution share-alike license meaning that anyone may freely distribute, modify, and reproduce it after the initial printing. That means that the project can live on after the initial supply of maps run out.
- (30 days)