Morning commutes

4 min read
Margaret Kelsey
  •  Apr 24, 2015
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Commuting gets a bad rap. But whether you’re sitting on the subway or walking upstairs to your home office, the trip provides a vital transition between your work and personal lives—and hopefully, some engaging views along the way.

This week, we asked you to share your morning commute. Take a peek into the worlds your fellow designers pass through every weekday morning.

“Now that it’s finally springtime in NYC, I’ll escape the protection of the subway and start biking from home in Willamsburg Brooklyn to HQ in Flatiron in Manhattan. I love riding my PureFixe road bike through the streets of New York.”
Seth Bannon, Founder & CEO, Amicus
“My commute is extremely short. Just 20 steps across the apartment to my office overlooking Butler St. Sometimes when I’m feeling fancy, I’ll walk 2 blocks down the street for coffee first. Either way, it’s very convenient.”
Val Head, Designer, Speaker, and Author
“Like most New Yorkers, I take the subway to work. My commute is 2 trains, 1 mile of walking, and approximately 45 minutes door-to-door. Getting off at Union Square and walking through the Flatiron on a nice spring day is pretty lovely.”
Lydia White, Product Designer at Tumblr
“I catch the East River Ferry from Williamsburg to the Financial District where ustwo is located.”
Simon Lindsay, Front-end Developer at ustwo
“The entrance to the subway that I take on my daily commute.”
Shawn Gregg, Development/Product Consultant for Sony
“My commute is 37 steps from my bed to the home office. Sometimes I have to take a detour to pick up our 11-month-old on the way (but we get to use the carpool lane at least), which doubles my commute, but I’m okay with that.”
Patrick Haney, Designer/Developer at Hanerino
“I commute every morning on a mamachari from the Mission to SOMA, where the Jauntful studio is. It’s an easy ride down Valencia and Market St that have safe bicycle lanes, which gives me a bit of quiet thinking and planning time before starting the day at the studio.”
Raphael Grignani, Co-founder & CEO of Jauntful
“Most days, I travel from San Francisco to Menlo Park and use the time to focus on photography, read up on things, and work on side projects.”
Maykel Loomans, Product Designer at Facebook
“Other walker and bikers waiting for a ship to pass through the Pulaski Bridge. I commute from Greenpoint to R/GA in Hell’s Kitchen by bike.”
Tim Hettler, Senior Front-End Developer
“I’m lucky to have just a 3 block walk to Facebook NY’s office in Astor Place—a refreshing change from the 1 hour commute in SF. I appreciate the architecture of this church every morning, especially now that the trees are blooming.”
Barton Smith, Designer at Facebook
“Commuting by bike helps me clear my head.”
Stefan Hartwig, Partner & Designer at Electric Pulp
“I live only few blocks away from our office, so I usually take a small detour through the almost green park.”
Sandijs Ruluks, Designer/Founder of FROONT
“I walk to work everyday. It’s grey and raining this morning, but it’s usually quite beautiful. The market stalls are bustling with merchants setting up their tents and the Parliament building shines over the canal.”
Serena Ngai, Design Lead at Shopify
“I often take the F train to work and enjoy the view of Brooklyn—and a bit of Manhattan.”
Alex Kolundzija, Founder of
“My commute from Greenwich into Central London is 40 minutes door to door—thankfully a fraction of the time I used to spend commuting from the coastal town of Brighton.”
Paul Annett, Senior Designer at Twitter
“What I love about my commute is what I love about in Chicago in general; you don’t need a car. In the warm weather, I walk and bike with the city. In the cold, I get to ride trains and buses. People watching with coffee is a big part of how I start my day!”
Mig Reyes, Designer at Basecamp
“Lua is located in the Flatiron district, and I live about a 15 min walk away in the East Village. Provided it’s not raining (NY’s most annoying weather by far), I really relish the morning walk to wake up—bit of sun, crisp air, lots of people in motion—especially on gorgeous spring days like today. It’s invigorating and being walkable means there’s never any late trains or traffic to frustrate.”
Austin Lane, Chief Product Officer at Lua
“I travel so much and luckily can fit my life and my work in a single backpack and a laptop bag. I have become very adept at finding local coffee shops and co-working spaces to work from!”
Tracy Osborn, Author of and founder of
“When it’s not freezing in Ohio, I will make a 20 minute bike commute to the office. Otherwise, I am typically making a short drive into the sun.”
Michael Paulus, Lead UI Developer at Rogue Fitness
“From when I walk out my door until I arrive at Nimble Division in Midtown under 20 minutes!”
David Buivid, Managing Partner of The Smack Pack
“I take the subway from Greenpoint to Times Square—G to the E or L to the E.”
Raven Keller, UX Strategist and Product Designer at the NYTimes
“My commute on a rainy day.”
Paul Armstrong, Co-founder & CCO of ChoreMonster
“Most days, I grab the subway for my commute, and I’m lucky enough to see some sunshine as we go over the Manhattan bridge.”
Sean Crowe, Senior Experience Designer at Moment
“My daily commute gets a little livelier when New Yorkers commit random acts of art, like this piano in the East River.”
Zeb Dropkin, Hustling Entrepreneur at RentHackr
“I broke my ‘riding in the cold record’ commuting in 3 degrees with a -12 windchill from red hook to the museum.”
Shelley Bernstein, Vice Director of Digital Engagement and Technology at Brooklyn Museum
“Waiting between train transfers with book and work bag in tow.”
Michael Smyjewski, Designer at Crush & Lovely
“My commute is a short one—2 miles from my house to my office. Most days, I take my motorcycle, a Ducati SportClassic. After years of multi-hour commutes, this is hands down my best one yet!”
Noah Stokes, Senior Product Designer at Creative Market
“My commute on the Brooklyn S.”
Sawyer Hollenshead, Partner at Oak Studios
“My commute starts at the Forest Hills station in Boston every day. I take my daughter to preschool every morning which is close to my office. Depending on the day, we’ll either take the MBTA’s Orange Line or the commuter rail. Every day, my daughter falls asleep when we get into the station.”
Matthew Crist, Principal/Experience Design at Cantina
“I usually take the subway in to the office. I take the G to the 7, not because it’s always the fastest, but I like getting the view from the 7 train platform. It used to be next to the graffiti mecca, 5 Pointz, until it was torn down last year. MoMA PS1 is within view and some street artists still frequent nearby walls within view.”
Scott Kellum, Senior Front-End Designer
“I live in north Seattle, so I take a bus each morning into downtown where my office is located. Seattle is notorious for traffic, however, I feel fortunate to have one of the most amazing views as I sit in it. It’s a great time to catch up on the morning email, plan out my day, and listen to some music before things get hectic in the office. Once I get to downtown, it’s just a couple flights of stairs out of the bus tunnel then around the corner to my building.”
Natalie Greco, Creative Director at projekt202 Seattle
“Mornings are all autopilot, with a little help from the subway.”
Mike Perrotti, Experience Designer at Meetup
“Driving across Main Street, Greenville, SC on my way to work at CoWork Greenville. Main Street, Greenville, SC is ranked one of the top Main Streets in the US by Parade Magazine (2014) and Travel & Leisure (2012).”
Matthew Cook, Digital Producer
“I recently started working in my own space at the American Underground in downtown Durham, NC. It’s a great space hosting a variety of small businesses and startups. Overall, it’s a great space with plenty of opportunities to connect with the local startup community.”
Shaun Moynihan, Creative Director at Elastik

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