The taxicab metric can be used to measure distances in idealized gridded cities. However, usually this serves only as a fun exercise for students.
I'm looking for engaging (as non-technical as possible) examples of real-world applications of the taxicab metric (or other metrics inspired by cities, such as the British rail metric).
It seems that it's mostly used in machine learning, but everything I've seen so far is too technical to explain to laypeople. So, I'd love to get some ideas!