Streetview, Maps, and Mexchester

I've linked to Hayley's cool blog before, (here) but if you've yet to check it out you really should.

She asked a few months back via Twitter for people to send in maps and art works based on Manchester and Google's Street View - a lovely idea. I decided that I'd send her over some of my own maps to let her see - she's already perused the whole Yeardley map before (a blog series I really should make an effort to finish, huh?). So I sent her a few maps. Hand drawn, they dated from 2005. A long time ago...

I don't think they formed a part of her exhibition, not having been directly based on Manchester (but kinda), which will take place in Manchester at 2022nq between 25th January to the 18th February 2013. I really hoped to make it along (and still might) but for now, I'll be wishing I'd taken part.

Hayley and I had talked about exhibiting some of my "stuff", but the maps were never meant for other eyes really - they were pock marked, stained, and rather maniac. I love them; they are of an older fictional city that I called Mexchester, but showing to people would've been too much.

At least, at an exhibition. So, as a bit of fun, and to celebrate the new year, I've uploaded the PDFed versions of the maps that I made for Hayley to this very blog. In them, you'll find the intricate details of my brain - the technical aspects of drawing roads and railways, and the incredible detail I go into when drawing maps.

I wish that they were going to be on show in Manchester, just so I could say "Yeah, I have had something exhibited, heh" but to be honest the idea actually fucking terrifies me. But putting it up on here? Strangely non-plussing. A bit more about Mexchester: it was a fictional city with no real structure, other than a ridiculously complex and far reaching railway network, tram network, bus, motorway and road system, deliberately designed to give me scope in which to draw maps, but also to tie them into a cohesive (ish) fiction. There are more maps elsewhere, but these five are the best quality.

Click the links below to be linked to them. I'm hosting them on my Dropbox, so email me if they don't work. As said above, they are PDF files.

Queensgate railway station
This one is not the most complicated, but is one of the ones I was intersted in the old history of railway stations - here, two bridges side by side, one built after the other, show that the capacity of the station is very high - it's just after a main line station. It reminds me of Clapham Junction station, actually.

Shoulder railway station
This one is at the end of a major line, a terminus of two different lines. I spent a while redoing the station, as a narrative in the efforts to expand and modernise the station, adding longer platforms and stuff. Later, and more recently, I have added traffic calming, bus lanes, and a one way system through the town centre.

The Tellwell Viadcut
This drawing was originally done as an exercise in redeveloping a motorway junction in a restricted area. The location of the Office Block, signified by an "O", is where the old junction was. To expand the motorway, the route was changed and the new overbridge was built "offline". The Tesco distribution depot was added at a later date.

Road Bridge area
This one is a strange one. From the current drawing status there are no major differences. But in the original drawing the road was one only one viaduct. The second one, to the "bottom", was added later, and the tunnel section made into a sliproad. The metro system, added later, slips under roads built to accomodate the new tramways that I envisioned in the city. It is one of the smallest scale drawings I have ever done too, actually.

Regency Park area
This drawing is my all time favourite, and is unfinished. A ridiculously complicated system of junctions, lanes, bridges and motorways. It's the crossing point where the main city centre motorway (the M43, for no reason at all) crosses the A556 Riverside Expressway (stolen from Glasgow). It was the most intricate drawing I've ever attempted, done, completed, and then changed. This scan shows the still in development widening of the main motorway line to further running lanes, something that was inspired by my time in Houston.

And if for some mental reason you really like them, drop me a line too. I'd love to hear what people think of them - though don't comment on me, as I already know I am a strange nerd.