A new tube map has started appearing in London Underground stations, and there’s a lot of changes to this edition.

Most notable is what’s not on the map — a long purple line that should have marked the launch of the Elizabeth line.

But what’s been added is a clearer way of showing when tube stations on different lines are within walking distance of each other. Although a lot of Zone 1 is omitted as you’ll have dotted lines all over the place turning the map into a spiders web.

Also, the stations shown have to meet a set of criteria that includes stations less than a 700m or a 10minute walk apart, where there is an easy, well-lit, signposted walking route and where making the change opens up additional travel options.

Showing walking distances for connections only between different lines does means one of the more famous “it’s easier to walk” options, between Holborn or Leicester Square to Covent Garden is not shown, as it would double up the Piccadilly line and be even more confusing.

Julie Dixon, Head of Information & Design at TfL, said: “Customers may not always be aware of how close some stations are and we hope this new design will give customers better information to plan their journeys and use London’s transport network more easily.”

London TravelWatch says that it has been pressing TfL and rail operators for a number of years to show on their maps where passengers can make easy and useful interchanges between stations, most notably in its 2015 Interchange Matters report. The interchanges will also be appearing on the rail network maps as well – showing options such as a 6 minute walk between Putney and East Putney stations enabling journeys between Wimbledon and Richmond.

Janet Cooke, Chief Executive of London TravelWatch commented: “This is a great outcome of our work on interchanges. It will open up a whole new set of easier journeys and save passengers time and money at the same time by avoiding the need to go into central London.”

The addition of the dotted walking lines also cleans up one aspect of the map, where stations have been shown as connected, when in fact they’re a short walk from each other – such as West Croydon or Clapham High Street.

The biggest change though is around West Hampstead where the connected stations have been more accurately represented with the walks between them, but also the lines have had a kink added to make the separation clearer.

One missed opportunity is that at Canary Wharf they continue to show the DLR and Jubilee line stations of the same name as being close to each other, whereas anyone who knows the area knows to use Heron Quays DLR instead as it’s a much shorter walk.

The external interchanges shown on the current tube map are:

  • Archway – Upper Holloway
  • Bow Church – Bow Road
  • Canary Wharf LU – Canary Wharf DLR
  • Clapham High Street – Clapham North
  • Emirates Royal Docks – Royal Victoria
  • Forest Gate – Wanstead Park
  • Hammersmith (Circle & Hammersmith) – Hammersmith (District & Piccadilly)
  • North Greenwich – Emirates Greenwich Peninsular
  • Shadwell (London Overground) – Shadwell DLR
  • Shepherd’s Bush (Tube) – Shepherd’s Bush (London Overground)
  • Tower Gateway – Tower Hill
  • Walthamstow Central – Walthamstow Queen’s Road
  • West Croydon (London Overground) – West Croydon Tram
  • West Hampstead (Tube) – West Hampstead (London Overground)
  • White City – Wood Lane

The use of a paler grey for the zones also seems to make the map look a cleaner, and a few subtle changes have been made to the design, namely the layout of the tram lines, a curve at New Cross, and a small gap added between the Overground and Underground lines along the routes to Richmond and Watford Junction.

In addition, boat pictograms have been added at Canary Wharf, Westferry and Woolwich Arsenal to better reflect the interchange capabilities that exist with river services.

A final note — the tube map also now says in the bottom corner: “This diagram is an evolution of the original design conceived in 1931 by Harry Beck”

And that’s a reminder, that technically, it’s not a tube map, it’s a diagram, even if everyone* calls it a map.

*pedants excepted

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41 comments on “London Underground releases a new tube map
  1. Andrew Gwilt says:

    Don’t see any difference in this on how TfL have changed the tube maps.

    Except changes to the markings that stations that are closer or near to each other that are interchangeable or known as “Out-of-Station” interchange. Also the limited service to Battersea Park on London Overground could of been shown aswell.

  2. Long Branch Mike says:

    Great breakdown of the changes, thanks.

  3. Melvyn says:

    The irony of showing Stations that are close to each other to walk is the fact that walking distances to change lines at a station like Green Park which is shown as a single station are often far greater than crossing the road at West Hampstead between Overground and underground !

    I notice Bayswater and Queensway are not shown with walking distance yet these stations are only a few minutes apart .

    As usual the map is already out of date given step free access to the Waterloo and City Line at Bank Station is now available!

    • Stuart says:

      Queensway/Bayswater is not a very useful interchange, and also Queensway only has lifts so its use isn’t encouraged, in the same way as Gloucester Road not being an interchange

    • Muzer says:

      Step-free access to the W&C at Bank isn’t that useful given that there’s (currently?) no step-free access at Waterloo (correct me if I’m wrong on this). And besides, this map has never pretended to be the comprehensive source on step-free access – you really want the Step-free Tube Guide and/or the Avoiding Stairs Tube Guide.

  4. Wayne says:

    The PDF versions aren’t up yet on the TFL site, at least not as far as I can see.

  5. Melvyn says:

    It’s not so surprising that Elizabeth Line is not on the map when you notice that Barbican, Moorgate and Whitechapel Stations still don’t have full step free access shown all of which should have been completed by theme of Elizabeth Line opening this weekend!

    Instead they are all still building sites …

  6. Modi Elnadi says:

    What about Charring Cross and Embankment? They are 240 feet or so away from each other !

    • Rene Kande says:

      This is because it doubles up the Northern line, so would make it more confusing.

    • Melvyn says:

      Article mentions that zone 1 examples have been omitted simply because of the sheer number there are and confusing nature they would make to the map .

    • Albert J. P. says:

      I guess the full rail map could show an interchange between the mainline station and the District this way. For just Tube it’s of limited use indeed.

  7. Tony says:

    Anyone know the reason for the separation of the Bakerloo and Watford DC lines?

    & yes I’d love to see a solid orange / dashed to Battersea Park Maybe they might do it when the NLE opens up?

  8. Andrew T says:

    @Modi “Although a lot of Zone 1 is omitted as you’ll have dotted lines all over the place turning the map into a spiders web.”

  9. PW says:

    While it is quicker to walk between Canary Wharf tube to Heron Quays DLR, several trains terminate/start from CW DLR so in many cases it makes some sense to interchange there.

  10. Callum says:

    There’s no real need to show a walking route between Charing Cross and Embankment as both the lines serving the former also call at the latter.

    • Melvyn Windebank says:

      But it’s quicker to walk from Charing Cross to Embankment Station if you want Circle and District lines than use tube trains involving going down and up escalators etc.

  11. David says:

    But none of these maps will be produced online so that they can be read and used.

  12. Stuart says:

    Although graphic congestion in zone 1 could be an issue, you’d think they would show the links where out-of-station-interchange is permitted. After all that affects our pockets as well as our feet!

  13. Shaeha says:

    This new map is not good as it misses out a lot of the zone 1 stations.

    If there isn’t a legend/key on the map the dotted lines are useless and confusing.

  14. Richard says:

    Hmmm, I’m not sure about this.
    Whilst practical, sort of, it’s starting to look very cluttered.

    The whole point of Beck’s original design was to focus solely on the Tube network.

    This is a move towards the issues he moved away from and surface level thinking is being brought back into the map. Not an improvement.

    • Alex says:

      I agree that there’s always a usefulness vs. clutter trade-off, and it’s never obvious where to set that dial.

      But I disagree with the remark about “surface level thinking”. The purpose of an abstract diagram is to tell you what journeys are possible, while ignoring any geographic information that doesn’t actually matter to your journey. This new walkability information is very much consistent with that, because it does affect your journey.

  15. A RAMSAY says:

    Queensway to Bags water
    Wonder how many tourists have changed at Notting hill rather than make short walk along Queensway to from Hyde park /Kensington palace

  16. Andrew says:

    Another external interchange shown on the diagram is Kenton to Northwick Park.

  17. Walter Guy-Briscoe says:

    I find the lighter grey for even number zone boundaries useless. It is good to see that Victoria is now marked as step-free. It actually has an absurdly long ‘step-free’ walk between Victoria line ticket hall and trains.

  18. lmm says:

    Was hoping to see the Paddington to Lancaster Gate connection, as that’s one I’ve missed on past journeys, but apparently not.

    • Rene says:

      It has ommited many throughout, e.g. Paddington to Lancaster Gt, or Bayswater to Queensway, or Kentish Town (tube) / Chalk Farm to Kentish Town West (Overground) – it is a good idea, but not properly implemented yet…

  19. Rog Laker says:

    Still no sign of the quick, easy, and signposted, Bank-Cannon Street street-level walk?
    And why the continued omission of the limited-services London Overground link between Battersea Park and Wandsworth Road, also useful when direct access to Clapham Junction unavailable. If it’s good enough for the District line to Kensington Olympia…..

  20. Chris Rogers says:

    Sorry but tube maps have included the “This diagram is an evolution of the original design conceived in 1931 by Harry Beck” line for a couple of decades. Not sure I see the point of the kink at Finchley Rd…

  21. JB says:

    I am suprised no one mentioned the hideous image on the front of the new map. Is this really what visitors to London want to take home with them? Why not a picture of some of London’s world famous buildings.
    Thanks to ‘Art on the Underground’. I don’t think so!

  22. drhhmb says:

    While the West Hampstead link is welcome, it highlights the omission of Thameslink from the diagram and hence no link to West Hampstead Thameslink station can be shown. It is also a tad confusing that West Hampstead Overground station has the National Rail (former BR) symbol beside it even though it is in TfL’s bailliwick.

    • Tony Baldwin says:

      The Thameslink is on the joint TfL/NR TOC map and shows a dotted line commection from West. Hampstead – Metropolitan Line \ Overground \ Thameslink it shows the double Aaron as the LO station is the one closest to Thameslink.

  23. Geoffrey says:

    The omission of Thameslink throughout is VERY SERIOUS as it reduces the number of options for north -south travel considerably. Blackfriars excelllent and unique in the world station over a major river in unforgivable. A simple move of the District/Circle line/station and a cross river mark for the station should be easy but TfL seen to be stuck that only their lines should shown not every rail. We should have a tube & train map is three sizes Zone 1 & 2, the total zone 6 and the whole of Network Southeast (London Conections map) TfL should also be working on separating the Northern Line into two === Charing Cross to Battersea Power in black and as Strand Line and via Bank to Morden as Lonbard Line in Gold. This means black and gold adjacient north of Camden Town.
    Also Hammersmith and City name shortend to HAMMER LINE as it now goes to West Ham home of the Hammers. Finaly colour change and new name for Edgware Road to Olympia and Wimbeldon, a separate part of District with its own shorter rolling stock, to be a very pale green and called Earls Line.
    Please don not get me started on station names.

    • Tony Baldwin says:

      There already is a complementary additional TfL / NR London map there has been for the last 3 years at least

      If that was the only map we would have people wanting a TfL only map I for one would be in that boat

    • Paul says:

      But West Ham play at Stratford, which is not on the H&C!

  24. Ivan says:

    On-line version now here. http://content.tfl.gov.uk/standard-tube-map.pdf
    The kink at Finchley Rd is evidently to allow them to show the walk connection to FR&Frognal, which I’ve used a lot.
    As noted there are several omitted but important walk connections. is another I have used a lot. Maybe in zone 1 you just reduce the distance criterion to show the very close/very valuable ones. Edgware Rd (Dis/Ham/Cir) to Marylebone is the only sensible way to get to Marylebone if you are coming from the SSlines to the west/south. Warren St to Regents Park is so close surely that should be shown.

  25. Ivan says:

    Sorry that should have been Gt Portland St to Regents Park.

  26. Londonlad says:

    I happen to think the tube map is becoming too crowded.

    It is a London Underground map, so only London Underground lines should be on it. I’m surprised they haven’t started to add the bus routes onto the thing.

  27. ADS says:

    “pedants excepted” lol

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