diamond geezer

 Tuesday, October 08, 2019

What's the best-connected tube station?
n.b. I'm looking for the tube station which has tube trains to the most other tube stations.
Have a guess.
n.b. One train only.
n.b. Changing trains is not allowed.
n.b. I'm considering the tube network only.
n.b. The tube network officially has 270 stations.
n.b. Normal timetable only, no rare special journeys.
What do you reckon?
For example, Holborn station connects to all the other 48 stations on the Central line, and all the other 52 stations on the Piccadilly line, making a total of 100. But we can beat that.
London's best-connected tube station, unsurprisingly, is the one with the most lines. And that's King's Cross St Pancras.

King's Cross St Pancras is on six lines - the Circle, Hammersmith & City, Metropolitan, Northern, Piccadilly and Victoria.

And a lot of lines means a lot of connected stations. Altogether I make it 164.
Here's how...

There are 36 stations on the Circle line, but we can't include King's Cross itself, so that makes 35.
There are 11 stations on the Hammersmith & City line that aren't on the Circle line, all east of Liverpool Street.
There are 25 stations on the Metropolitan line that aren't on the Circle line, all north of Baker Street.
So far that's 35+11+25=71 stations.

There are 49 other stations on the Northern line, but we can't reach the Charing Cross branch which leaves 41.
And we've already counted Moorgate, which leaves 40.
So far that's 71+40=111 stations.

There are 52 other stations on the Piccadilly line.
But we've already counted Rayners Lane to Uxbridge, which leaves 45.
And we've already counted Gloucester Road and South Kensington, which leaves 43.
So far that's 111+43=154 stations.

There are 15 other stations on the Victoria line.
But we've already counted Stockwell, Victoria, Green Park, Euston and Finsbury Park, which leaves 10.
So that's 154+10=164 stations altogether.
As you can see, this is all rather complicated.
It's so complicated that I'm sure I'll have made some mistakes today.
I'm sure you'll tell me if I'm wrong.
You can do that here. comments
King's Cross St Pancras links to 60% of all London's tube stations.
No other station comes close.

Although you may have guessed the most-connected tube station, the rest of the Top 5 is a lot less obvious.

Number 2 is Embankment, with 137 connected stations.
That's 35 other stations on the Circle line.
Plus 41 other stations on the District line (not including Olympia and stations round to Edgware Road).
Plus 41 other stations on the Northern line (not including the Bank branch).
Plus 20 other stations on the Bakerloo line (not including stations already counted).
Which is 35+41+41+20=137 stations altogether.
In joint 3rd place are Gloucester Road and South Kensington with 120 connected stations.
That's 35 other stations on the Circle line.
Plus 41 other stations on the District line (not including Olympia and stations round to Edgware Road).
Plus 44 other stations on the Piccadilly line (not including stations already counted).
Which is 35+41+44=120 stations altogether.
In joint 5th place are Liverpool Street...
That's 35 other stations on the Circle line.
Plus 11 other stations on the Hammersmith & City line.
Plus 25 other stations on the Metropolitan line.
Plus 46 other stations on the Central line (not including Mile End and Notting Hill Gate).
Which is 35+11+25+46=117 stations altogether.
...and Mile End with 117 connected stations.
That's 53 other stations on the District line (not including Olympia and stations round to Edgware Road).
Plus 47 other stations on the Central line (not including Ealing Broadway).
Plus 17 other stations on the Hammersmith & City line (not including Liverpool Street).
Which is 53+47+17=117 stations altogether.
I reckon the Top 10 Best Connected Tube Stations goes like this:

1st) King's Cross St Pancras 164
2nd) Embankment 137
3rd) Gloucester Road 120
3rd) South Kensington 120
5th) Liverpool Street 117
5th) Mile End 117
7th) Baker Street 114
8th) Moorgate 111
9th) Earl's Court 104
10th) Holborn 100
10th) Westminster 100

Note that eight of these are on the Circle line and six are on the District line. Only one is on the Victoria line (because the Victoria line's quite short and doesn't have many stations). Mile End is the best connected tube station outside zone 1. Holborn is the best-connected tube station on only two lines.

Slightly further down the list are Bank (top 20) and Monument (top 30). If you combined them to make one mega-station, it would connect to 163 other stations, which would would put Bank/Monument in second place. But Bank and Monument are officially two stations, according to TfL's official data, so this doesn't count.
Likewise there are officially two Hammersmith stations and two Paddington stations.
We discussed this in some depth back here.
If you include the DLR, then Bank leaps into the Top 10 along with West Ham.

If you include the Overground, then Liverpool Street jumps up into second place.

If you include Crossrail, fully complete, then Moorgate hits 3rd.

And if you include the DLR, Overground and Crossrail, then the Top 10 should be...

1st) Liverpool Street 174
2nd) King's Cross St Pancras 164
3rd) Moorgate 149
4th) Stratford 145
5th) Embankment 137
6th) Whitechapel 134
7th) Tottenham Court Road 125
8th) Gloucester Road 120
8th) South Kensington 120
10th) Ealing Broadway 119

Six of those are Crossrail stations, showing just what a gamechanger the purple line will be.

But for now...
Yes, I know I've ignored Thameslink, and all the other trains out of Paddington, and all the National Rail stations you can reach from London, because that completely blew my mind. Now is not the time to add Carlisle, Holyhead and Leighton Buzzard to a list of the stations you can travel to from Euston. Best stick to a TfL-centric view, for now.
...the best-connected tube station is King's Cross St Pancras.

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