I want to be here…
Pics, links and other stuff from Damien in Sydney, Australia.
Images by Manal Rachdi,OXO Architects & Nicolas Laisné, Architect
The Parisian metro system is truly a marvel of public transportation. As the sixth-largest metro system in the world, it carries nearly 1.5 billion passengers each year over its 132 miles of tracks—but for all its impressive capabilities, there are 11 stations that sit unused, either closedduring World War II or never opened to begin with. If one candidate wins the city’s mayoral election this year, however, those famous “ghost stations” might see new life, in very unexpected ways.
Read more and see more images at Smithsonian.com.
Historical Map: New York City’s Pneumatic Tube Mail System
Not a transit map in the usual sense of carrying passengers, this map instead depicts a network that conveyed mail at speeds of up to 35mph under the streets of New York from 1897 to 1953 (barring a small gap during World War I when it was shut down to conserve funds for the war effort).
This map probably shows the system at its height pre-WWI, with over 27 miles of tube. Even then, the costs of running such a system were becoming prohibitive, and the new-fangled automobile was becoming a viable and cost-effective alternative to transporting mail across the city.
New York wasn’t alone in having such a system, although it carried more mail than most: a single canister could hold up to 600 letters. Paris’ pneumatic tube mail remained in service until 1983, when it was finally ousted by fax and telex machines (remember those?)
Snow-laden overhead wires during the Blizzard of 1888, New York City. Gelatin silver photograph. New-York Historical Society (PR-020, B-92)
Most of us freak out at the mere sight of a bug — let alone a photo! But there’s something about biologist Sam Droege’s pictures of insects that has hundreds of thousands of people marveling at them.
"Nelson Mandela reminds us that it always seems impossible until it is done. South Africa shows that is true. South Africa shows we can change, that we can choose a world defined not by our differences, but by our common hopes." —President Obama at the memorial service for Nelson Mandela