This is the second post about lining up in Shanghai metro after I posted the first entry about it (Lining up for Metro?) three and half years ago.
These days, when I started to take metro again, I found out in more and more stations, people started to line up.
The Change Over Time
8 years ago when I started my blog, people never line up.
3.5 years ago, people started to line up in busy stations like People’s Square, and that was the only case I saw it.
Now, in many small stations, people started to line up – 5 persons a line. Look at the photos I took randomly at Jinxiu Road station of Metro Line #7.
The lines are not exactly that type of lines in armies, but people do start to honor orders. People will automatically make up two lines along the door, leaving the space for people to get out first. For efficiency, people won’t wait for everyone to get out to get in, but the door is wide enough for three lines of people, the order were kept and it is much more efficient.
I guess there are two reasons for it. First is the abundance of resources. When more and more metro is built, there are enough room in most metro lines for everybody, and people don’t worry about missing the metro in most of the cases. Please note: it is not ALWAYS, but in most cases. Even if there are times there are more people that you need to way for two or three turns, as long as it is occasional, people still respect orders that they formed in normal days.
A half empty train cart in none-peak hours
The second is the ramp up of the city life style. Metro and the city life style itself are new things to the Chinese people. It takes some time for people to get used to it, to start to understand it, and form a set of rules. The interesting thing is, time will just help people to shape their behavior without too much external forces.
For the elevators, the same thing happens. People started to naturally stand on the right, and leaving the left side for people to pass. This is more and more trendy in Shanghai. When the trend is formed, it is hard to change, since everyone will be happy to do it to demonstrate their “fit” with this city.
P.S. I chatted about it with my friend RC who introduced the phrase “T.I.C moment” to me. He joked: “No! There will be one TIC moment missing in Shanghai!” I am happy that the TIC moments fade out while this city advances in civilization.