7. The Black Stripe at the Top of Signs Demarcated the Black Channel Where Signs Used to be Suspended From

The 1966 design which was also incorporated in the 1970 manual had a black stripe at the top of maps and signs. This was a response to NYCTA’s strict rules that no structural changes could be made to the stations. The visual indicator demarcated the metal channels suspended from the ceiling by black struts to hold the signs. The black stripe was eventually translated from a physical necessity into a graphic element, “whenever the panel requires a different structure, the black band should be a part of the graphics on the signs.”