Official Map: TransLink Bus and Rail Network, Brisbane and South East Queensland, Australia
It’s just occurred to me that I haven’t posted a single map yet from my native land, Terra Australis… so let’s rectify that now with this map of Brisbane’s Translink commuter rail service, supporting Railbus service that complements that service, and busways - dedicated roadways for commuter bus service (BRT). The first thing to notice about this map is the vast area it covers: over 260km (160 miles) from north to south, and around 50km (30 miles) from east to west with a staggering 23 fare zones!
This map was requested by Tumblr user brentpalmer - who I know has produced an alternative unofficial map of the central Brisbane part of this map. Check it out on his Tumblr, and I’ll have a more in-depth look at his work soon.
Have we been there? Been there? I was born there! That said, my family moved to Sydney when I was very young, so I’ve never actually caught any public transit there, despite visiting many times over the years.
What we like: Good definition of the different modes shown, with solid lines for rail services, white lines with coloured edges for the supporting Railbus services, and thinner coloured lines between black “road edge” lines for the busways. This allows future service to be shown as traditional dotted lines that still look sufficiently different to all the other modes shown. Also nice to see a matching diagrammatic style between the routes and the underlying “geography”.
What we don’t like: The need to show the entire system from Gympie on the Sunshine Coast all the way down to the Gold Coast means that central Brisbane - the busiest part of the map - becomes comparatively cramped for room. For the most part, it’s actually handled pretty well, but the curve on the Ferny Grove (Red) line out of Bowen Hills to Windsor is poorly executed, and the coloured call out lines to the UQ Lakes, PA Hospital and Wolloongabba stations aren’t the ideal solution. The purple “Assisted Wheelchair Access” icons don’t resolve very well at the small size as seen online, but may be better on the printed version.
Our rating: Nothing outstanding, but does a good job of differentiating between modes. Gets a little cramped in the centre. Three stars.
(Source: Official TransLink website)
I miss catching trains. Used to go from home at Sherwood to high school at Indooroopilly every day, with the occasional trip into Brisbane Central or South Bank in the afternoons (or whenever I got bored and skipped out on the rest of the day) to make a nuisance of myself hanging around parks and the Queen Street Mall, with the even more infrequent trip up to Gympie North to visit family. We have a pretty good public transport system here, I wish I could use it more often.