Apple Gets into Mass Transit

Apple recently spent nearly $4 million to restore North/Clybourn, a run-down subway station near its newest store in downtown Chicago. The Chicago Tribune said the station used to be so crappy riders would get off one stop earlier or later to avoid it. Now, climbing the stairs out of the station, potential buyers of iPods and iPads get out only to see a “giant, glowing box of glass, stone and polished steel”: the new Peter Bohlin-designed Apple store.

The new station features ”new brick, big new windows, and a sleek new look;” the landscape architecture created by Chicago-based Hoerr Schaudt Landscape Architects includes a new plaza with a “zero-depth” fountain that drowns out the noise of passing cars. One potential customer interviewed by The Chicago Tribune said: “It made me want to sit down on a nice day with a cup of tea and a book. OK, in gratitude to Apple, it should be an iPad, but whatever. I say thank you to Apple.”

The inside of the station has been cleaned, repainted and degrimed, perhaps so it will befit the new Apple name and logos that are now branded everywhere. “From the moment you push through the turnstile, Apple ads beam at you, as bright as searchlights. Down in the tunnel, all the other ads are gone.”