I like how in Paris every station has a unique name, and that's part of the navigation system for the city: directions regularly include the name of the nearest Metro station. Of course that's because Paris has no grid, and grids actually make subway station naming kind of boring: do we really want stops called 23rd-Park, 23rd-Broadway, 23rd-Seventh and 23rd-Eighth?
On the other hand, I also agree with Ben Kabak that the names proposed by Rodriguez's staff are not great. They're not as bad as the DC Metro with stations like Archives-Navy Memorial-Penn Quarter, but they're still too long. I'm going to take them one at a time:
- 7th Avenue 53rd Street: This can be just plain Seventh Avenue, because we're going to rename the other ones.
- 7th Avenue Prospect Heights: This is in line with the MTA's push to rename stations after the neighborhoods they serve, but it's silly. The next stop on this line is Prospect Park, and there's a 15th Street-Prospect Park stop on the F and Prospect Avenue stops on the R and 2/5 lines. Why not just rename it Carleton Avenue after the street on the other side of Flatbush Avenue?
- 7th Avenue 4th Street: This is a typo, unless Rodriguez is working with the MTA to fund a subway under Fourth Street. I think we should rename it Ninth Street, and then the Smith-9th Street station can just be Smith, and the Fourth Avenue-Ninth Street station can just be Fourth Avenue.
- Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall: Take off the "City Hall" part, off of this and the IRT station. There's a City Hall station across the park on the R train.
- Chambers Street-World Trade Center: Since this is part of the same complex as the E train terminal at World Trade Center, why not call the whole thing World Trade Center? Well, even the south end of the A/C platforms are pretty far from the WTC, and we'll have to make sure the #1 train station won't be called World Trade Center when it opens.
- Gun Hill Road - White Plains Road: This can stay as just Gun Hill Road.
- Park Place: Are people really getting this one confused with the Franklin Avenue Shuttle stop? If it's a big deal, call it Park Row instead.
- Gun Hill Road - Eastchester Road: As Larry Velázquez pointed out on Twitter, it's not even very close to Eastchester Road. We could name it after Seymour Avenue or Hammersley Avenue, both of which are closer.
- Pelham Parkway - White Plains Road: This is probably the best we can do. We don't want it to get confused with the other Pelham Parkway stop, but there are nine other stops along White Plains Road. so it looks like we're stuck with both of them.
- Pelham Parkway - Williamsbridge Road: First, spell "Williamsbridge" right. We could just call this "Williamsbridge Road," but then people might think it's close to the "Williams Bridge" station on the Metro-North Harlem Line.
- 36th Street - Sunnyside Yards: The problem with this one is it assumes that Sunnyside Yards is a destination. I mean, sure, I took Alon Levy there, but we're transit geeks. Does it mean someone in Rodriguez's office is expecting this part of the Yards to be developed soon? How about 38th Avenue instead?
- 36th Street - Fourth Avenue: If we rename the LIC station to 38th Avenue, we can keep this as 36th Street.