I’d actually rather keep away from using instant teleportation as a general purpose transport system. When people don’t travel past the environment, they don’t care as much about what it looks like, and in turn don’t put as much effort into making it spectacular.
I know it’s minecraft-esque, but some sort of on-rails fast transport. Obviously it doesn’t have to be a minecart or on literal rails, and in fact doesn’t have to be limited to only being stuck to the ground (think Futurama’s Tube Transport System). In theory, that should be better for a chunked map game, because it can know where a person is going to before they get there, and intelligently prioritize loading distant required chunks into memory if they’re not already there. Even more so if you can’t manually exit the transport until you hit your destination.
Alternatively, taking your Jump-pads/directional acceleration blocks idea we could set up ‘Mechanical Oortian Firing Systems’ (a catapult or cannon or something physical). Fire someone into the air to move them long distances quickly. I guess you’d have to hope the person who set it up had the foresight to put down a bed of leaves at the landing point…
As an extension, people wearing different weighted gear (probably not backpack contents) could travel slightly different distances, hilariously causing people in really heavy gear not to make it to the landing point, or people with nothing on to overshoot (something maze-builder could use to great effect).
An alternative extension. Add a portable glider. Then someone can be fired into the air, activate the glider and travel round the city with a bit more control and distance. This concept wouldn’t have to be much faster than walking (so adds less server strain), because you’re inherently increasing travel speed by not having to navigate around buildings. Plus you get awesome views.