In England and Wales, the Republic of Ireland, Hong Kong and some Commonwealth countries (such as India, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand), the term subway normally refers to a specially constructed underpass for pedestrians and/or cyclists beneath a road or railway, allowing them to reach the other side in safety. Subways may also be constructed for the benefit of wildlife.
The term is also used in the United States, for example, by the California Department of Transportation, for a road undercrossing which is depressed. The term is also used in parts of Pennsylvania in the United States, such as Harrisburg, Duncannon and Wyoming County.
Underground pedestrian passageways are less common in North American cities than in European cities of comparable size. They are constructed when it is necessary for pedestrians to cross a railway line or a dual carriageway such as an interstate highway, and of course they appear at the exits from underground rapid transit systems, but one would be rarely built just to enable people to cross an ordinary city street. When they are built, the term pedestrian underpass is more likely to be used, because the word "subway" in North America refers to rapid transit systems such as the New York City Subway or the Toronto Subway.
In the Philippines, the term is also underpass, and there are two types: underpasses for pedestrians can be seen along Ayala Avenue in Makati and in the City of Manila near Quiapo Church, while vehicular ones run the length of EDSA and other thoroughfares. One of the earliest and most notable vehicular underpasses is the "Lagusnilad" located in front of Manila City Hall.
A pedestrian and cyclist subway under a main road in the United Kingdom
An entrance to a pedestrian subway in Saint Petersburg
- Road user's code, Transport Department of Hong Kong
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