Ross Smith on social identity in the Metro

When people describe a city’s construction in its simplest sense, they tend to discuss the architecture, the way in which the streets and roads intersect, the way nature is embedded within the urban infrastructure to take away from the far too often grey and industrial skyline. All of these things create a social identity and a sense of belonging to said particular city. What doesn’t often get discussed, however, is how the formation of the city from below creates a social identity. A huge advancement in the structure of the city is the construction of the undergrounds. Metros, subways, undergrounds (or whatever you wish to call them) become fundamental in the everyday life of modern society and can be seen as a source of identity. Moreover, they have become marketable to general public as a tourist attraction so their iconicity can be seen in souvenir shops throughout the cities in which they reside.

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