Handy Facts - Travel and Moving About

New York City - Manhattan

Walking City Blocks - How long does it take to walk a block?
Based on a brisk walking speed of 3 miles per hour (and you won't walk any slower when you're in Manhattan, believe me!), it will take you about one minute to walk a block along an avenue (the short side of a block) and four minutes for every block along a street (the long side of the block).
Typical walking speed
Crosswalk designers (yes, there are people like that) figure on 2.68 miles per hour (they think of it as 1.2 meters per second), or 1.0 meters per second if there's a lot of elderly people around.
Speed of a Subway Train - How fast is that train?
When you're standing in the station, you can estimate how fast the subway is moving using these approximations.
Count how long it takes for five cars to move past you (or past any stationary point), and look up the speed in this table:
secondsspeed in mph
9 19
8 21
7 24
6 28
5 34
4 43
3 57
2 85

This is based on the average subway car being about 50 feet in length. If you count 10 cars instead of 5, double the speeds (e.g., ten cars in 6 seconds would be 56 miles per hour). (If you find your subway cars are significantly different in length, write to me with the details and I'll add another recalibrated table.)
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