Safer stops for vulnerable customers

Safer stops for vulnerable customers

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Safer stops for vulnerable customers
Joel Volinski, Lisa E. Tucker
State of Florida Department of Transportation Public Transit Office
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University of South Florida
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Transportation -- Florida ( lcsh )
Local transit -- Florida ( lcsh )

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University of South Florida Library
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University of South Florida
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C01-00444 ( USFLDC DOI )
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Safer Stops for Vulnerable Customers state of Florida Department of Transportation Public Transit Office 605 Suwannee Street Tallahassee, FL (850) 414-4500 P r oject Di r ector: Joe l Volinski Director National Ceflter for Transit Research Pr i ncipal I nvestigator: Lisa E. Tucker Re5earch Associate March2003


State of Florida Department of Transportation Public Transit Office 605 Suwannee Street Tallahassee, Flo rida 32399-0450 Project Manager: Tara Bartee Planning Administrator Center fo r Urban Transportation Research University of South Florida 4202 E Fow le r Avenue, CUT 100 Tampa, Florida 33620-5350 (813) 974-3120 Project Manager: Dennis Hinebaugh Trans it Program Director


.................................................................. --epc11 N o. 2 GoVI'mlr.$1\t.Acoc:.;I:J:Itio. ). C$t&'lclg N. Svblll'.e S. Rtpcft March 2003 1fer Stops for Vulnerable Customers 6 Perfonnng OtQ::rizalion Codto utl'lcrlS) 8 RepM No. 1cker, Lisa E. qtftmtng Organa:,!lcn Name ar.d ttional Center For Transit Research (NCTR) H). 'h'ork Urtl! No. 1iversity of South Florida CUT 1 00 1 1 : 02 East Fowler Avenue, Tampa, FL 33620 DTRS98-G-00329 Sponsoring Agency Name and Address 13. TWC Co\'ered ace of Research and Specia l Programs (RSPA) S. Department ofTransportaUon, Wash ington, D C 20590 >rida Department of Transportation 1-'. Ston&OMQAQer'W/COCfa 5 Suwannee Stree t MS 26, Tallahassee, FL 32399 NO!$$ tpported by a Grant from the USDOT Research and Special Programs Administration, and the Department of Transportatio n ....... ; transit agencies continue to seek innovative and effective means of increasing ridership and >proving the image of public transportation the bus stop must be acknowledged as part o f the erall transit environment. Factors such as the location, design, maintenance, and general 1pearance of bus stops greatly affect the public's perception, and often the r eality of a stop's 1fety and sec u rity. This synthesis report presents a brief synopsis of the current l iterature and chnologies being used i n the development of safer a n d more secure bus stops. While the focus most specifically w ith regard to v u lnerab l e popu lations-women, child r en, senior citizens, and e disabled-improvements related to the safety and security of bus stops may be of benef i t to all msit users, potential us ers, the community at large, and the transit industry in general. Yior39$J 21. 22. Pric:e nclass i fied Unclassif ied 87 Form DOT F 1700.7


sarer Stops fOr VJ!IJierable {.;JtStofl1eYS Executive Summary The safety and security of public bus stops are critical considerations for patrons, potential users, transit agencies, and the communities they serve. As transit agencies continue to seek Innovative and effective means of increasing ridership and imp roving the image of public transportation, the bus stop must be acknowledged as part of the overall transit environment. Factors such as the location design, maintenance, and general appearance of bus stops greatly affect the public's perception, and often the reality of a stop's safety and security. Some transit customers are generally considered to be more vulnerable in terms of their safety and security at bus stops. Women, children, senio r citizens, and the disabled often have additional or different needs and preferences than the population at large. Because these groups constitute a large portion of transit ridership, it is importan t to address the ir concerns and explore available options in mitigating the problems associated with the safety and security of these vulnerable populations. Senior citizens and women typically have a greater fear for their own personal security, and for those with children that caution extends to their children as well. Situations causing the most anxiety tend to be those in which passengers are alone at a bus stop, waiting in a deserted or dark area, or waiting in crime-ridden neig hborhoods For customers with physical disabilities, access to the bus stop and safety are particular ly important. The environmental attributes of the area surrounding a bus stop also contribute to the safety and security of waiting passengers. Aspects of the built environment as well as the location and design of the bus stop may greatly affect both custome rs and criminals' perceptions of the security of a particular bus stop. Certain land use characteristics such as liquor stores, bars, check-cashing establishments, and pawn shops are considered to be "negative" land uses, detrimental to the safety and security of bus stops. In addition, factors such as


Sater Stops tor VU[I!erable CIISI.Ollle rs graffrti and litter around the stop may encourage anti-social behaviors and contribute t o the perception that no one monitors or cares about the area. Various strateg i es have been undertaken in an attempt to provide safer and mo re secure bus stops for transit customers. Careful examination and planning of the location and design of bus stops are paramount to creating a safe and secure transit environment. Street furniture such as shelters, benches, garbage r eceptacles, vending machines, and appropriate signage may convey a semblance of ownership and contribute to customers' perceptions of a positive transit experience, provided the stop Is well maintained. Adequate lighting of the bus stop area is an important safety and security feature to patrons, particularly among those customers considered to be more vulnerable. In addition to theoretical and practical approaches, several technologies have been developed specifically to enhance the safety and security of bus stops Real-time information systems using GPS and AVL, solar-powered lighting, auditory signage and other directional systems, and "smart shelters offer many features that are often adaptable to individual agency needs and budgets. Given the nature of public transportation, It is most logical that there be public inv olvem ent in the planning of transportation services, including the location, design, features, and maintenance of bus stops. Collaboration provides a vehic le for dialogue and service improvements between transit agencies and the communities they serve. Several Adopt-A-Stop programs have been implemented throughout the country, through which volunteers agree to monitor the upkeep and cleanliness of their "ado pte d" bus stop. Such programs provide a sense of ownership and interest within the community and the volunteers activ ities improve the physical appearance of stops in general, thereby improving the safety and security of bus stops for all transit customers ii


Table of Contents I ntroduct i on ........ ...... .... .... ... .... ... .. .......... ... ... .... ...... ..... ..... .... ... ......................... .4 Customer Preferences ..... : .. .. .. .. .. ....... ....... .. .. ... ...... ... ......... .. .. ... .......... ..... ... 6 Transit Stop Env i ronments ......................... .. ... .. ........ ................................ ... .... 21 Techno l ogies ................. ................... ............... .................. ...... ....................... 44 Conclu s ion .. .... .. .......... .. ..... ...... ... .... .. ...... .... ................ .... .......... ....... ..... ... 56 References Cited ...... .. ..... ... ............ ...... ...... ... .... .......... ......... .... ......... .. ...... 61 Appendix A Arlington County Bus Stop Assessment Form .................................. .......... ..... 64 Appendix B Delaware Department of T ransporta ti on Bus Stop and Passenger Facilities Policy .... .... ..... .......... ......... .... .... ..... .... .... .... ....... .............. ... ... ......... ........ 75 Appendix C Vendo r List i ngs ....... .... .. .... ..................... ............ ....... .................. ... ....... ..... ... 83 List of Figures Figure 1: The Process of NextBus Technology (NextBus Information Systems, Inc. website) .. ... ............... ........ ..... ... ..... ........ .. .. .... ...... ............. ..... .. .... 46 Figure 2: Features of the Smart She l t e r (Daytech Manufacturing, I nc. website).48 Figu re 3: Three Yellow Blind Sign Strips Denoting a Bus Stop (Blind Signs, Inc. website) .................... ................ .. .......... .. .. ... ........ ... ..... .......... ..... ... ...... .... 53 Figure 4: Three Yellow Blind S i gn Strips Indicating Where to Board the Bus (Blind Signs Inc. website) ....... .... ...... ......... ........... ... .. ........... .......... ...... 54 Figure 5: Four Red B l ind Sign Str i ps I ndicating Crosswalk and Direction (Blind Sig ns, Inc. website) .. .. ......... ..... .... ... ..... ... ... ... .......... ....... ...... ..... ...... ... ...... .. 54 iii


Safer Stops fOr vu.ureraote l:U.Stomers Introduction Safety and security at public bus stops are critical considerations for patrons, potential users, transi t agencies, and the communities they serve. As transit agencies c ontinue to seek innovative and effective means of increasing ridership and improving the image of public transportation, the bus stop must be acknowledged as an important part of the overall transit environment. Whether the location, design, and maintenance of stops fall under the jurisdiction of the local government, citizen groups, private companies, or the transit agency itself, users and non-users alike perceive the bus stop to be part of the transit system, and therefore part of their experience in using transit. In addition to its practical function as a location of waiting for, boarding, and alighting the bus, the transit stop may also serve unintentionally as a public relations liaison of sorts within the community. The physical condition of the stop and its amenities contribute to the image of the local transit agency as well as the safety and security of publ ic transportation in general. The environmental attributes surrounding the bus stop and its location, design, and appearance all factor into the image of safety and security in the collective mind of the public. The perception of personal safety and security at bus stops may affect travelers' decisions of what routes or stops to use, or at least their confidence in using those routes or stops. Of further import, this perception could quite possibly affect the decision of whether to use transit at all. Some populations are generally considered to be more vulnerable than are others with regard to issues of safety and personal security in public areas. Women, children, the disabled and senior citizens frequently have separate or additional needs and preferences in relation to safety and security, and there is often particular concern regarding bus transit stops. These considerations are paramount and may affect access to jobs, childcare services, social networks, the bus stop itsel f, overall quality of life, and travel behaviors. 4


safer SI:O)lS for Vtt/11erab/e CJ

SWJ'S fOY VJtllteraD!e CustOIIters C u s tom e r P re f e ren ces Steadily increas ing publ i c i nvolveme n t in transit plan n ing and community design has led researchers and planners to seek in-depth and often i nnovative means of determining what the public prefers in relation to their transportation options. The industry i s gain ing a better unde r standing of how the public perce i ves bus tra n sit an d what peop l es expecta ti ons are when using pub lic transportation Studies exp l oring the pr efer e nces a n d perceptions re l ated to personal safety and security have focused much of the i r efforts on the surrounding envi r onment of the bus stop and the design of the stop itse l f Women, sen i or c i tizens an d t h e disabled are often referenced as having particular concerns regarding t heir safety and secu r ity at bus stops According to Ew i ng (2000), des i gne r s all too often impose their own taste ove r that o f the user or cl i en t or at the l east they make unfounded assumpt i ons about user p r e ferences in design. V i sual pre f erence surveys ar e growing i n popu l arity in physical p l ann ing projects utilizing i ntensiv e public i nvolvement, and are one means of determin i n g those design e l emen t s most desired by t h e pub lic. Ewing used this type of survey to query transit users about transit oriented design and the preferr e d characteristics of bus stops. The author provides a br ief explanation of the use of visua l preference surveys and the methodo l ogy employed in a part icul a r study conducted i n Sar asota Florida. Part ic i p ants i ncluded users no n users, and profess i onals, and collective l y they were shown sl i des of bus stops downtown transit centers, and transfe r f acilities Ewing admits antic i pating some variability in responses based on participant status as a user, non-user, or p r ofessional ; however, the results of the survey d i d not coincide with that initial expectation. In genera l regardless of the part i cipants' status, those features most positively affecting the preference for a particular bus stop included (in order of dec lining significance): 6


Saf-er Stof!S for Vu.111erat>te shelter; bench (without a shelter); trees or a n overhang shading the bus stop; vert i ca l curb at the bus stop; and, trees along the street leading to the bus stop. T he most preferred bus stops were then rated by participants during the survey. Ewing r eports the following var i ab l es had the most positive effect (i.n order of declining s i gnif i cance): she l ter; trees a l ong the street l eading to the bus stop; setback of the bus stop from the street edge; location of the stop at an i ntersection ; and, vertical curb at the bus stop. Ew i ng also reports that the fo ll owing variables significantly affected both bus stop preference and rating: shelter; trees along the street leading to the stop ; vertical curb at the stop; setback of the stop from the street edge; and, continuous sidewalk leading to the stop. Ewing makes no specific ment i on regarding the preferences of more vulnerable popu lati ons or the i r partic i pat i on i n this research He stresses that the study used a small sample and is exploratory. The author s interest lies in the application of the visual preferences survey method rather than the results of this particular study However it is of note that shelters were consistently ranked high in bus stop choice among users (2.63 on a 5-point sca l e, 5 being highest), non-users (3.01 ), and professionals (3.18), for an average participant rating of 2.79. Bus stop benches with no she l ter were a distant second in choice preferences with a combined participant rating of 1.35. 7


Safer SU>ps for Vulnerable CliStomers Ewing claims the results of this study conform to what Is generally known regarding transit-oriented and urban design, defensible space, and environmental pre ferences. He asserts that despite this, visual preference surveys may assist transit planners in determining the best transit stop locations and separating the most important from the many other less important features of transit-oriented design, thereby maximizing typically lim ited financial resources. Such a method may hold great potential in determining the needs and preferences of women, children senior citizens, and the disabled. Lusk (2002) used visual preference surveys in an assessment of bus and bus stop design characteristics that contribute to the perception of crime. While the majority of Lusk's report is devoted to the design and appearance of buses, fifteen focus groups of 168 diverse partic ipants in Detroit and Ann Arbor, Michigan; Burlington, Vermont; and Washington, D.C. were shown 70 slides which included 15 photographs of varying bus stop shelter designs. Lusk reports that the following qualities were mentioned positively during the group sess ions regarding participants' favored bus stop shelter: brick/masonry construction; open space; no bushes; architecture; bus stop location name on t h e shelter; some preferred the glass back wall; some prefer an open back, while others prefer a U-shaped design for protection; and, if a U-shaped shelter, an open front is preferred; other preferences include a shelter with an open front and open back or one with no sides. The stop least preferred by study participants was one with no side and rear walls to the shelter, giving the impression of vulnerability to sidewalk traffic behind the shelter. Blind alley entranceways near the stop were also mentioned as causing feelings of insecur ity. According to Lusk, a bus stop must "look like a 8


Safer Stops fOr VuJnerat>te <.:ustomers bus stop." In order to feel in control and confident, people must feel they are in control of their environment al)d of themselves. The author recommends a shelter resembling a safe building or home, a clearly visible locatio n/stop name, the provision of a bus schedule, perhaps a map, the stop should be well lit. and if ther e is a U-shaped opening, it should face the street rather than the sidewalk. Partic ip ants also reported a preference for clear glass walls all the way around with no advertising; not too much or too dense vegetation around the stop; and a shelter that is not too artistic. The stop should be well-maintained and clean; otherwise there is the suggestion of crimina l activity. The author also not es that women may have needs and perceptions related to personal security at the bus stop that differ from those of men. Women are not as strong as are men, they may have to provide care for small children, and are therefore often unable to "fight or flee" (lusk 2002:2) in the event of a risk to their personal security Stephens et a/. (1999) consider obtaining informat ion related to customer preferences to be difficult and a primary obstacle in the creation of a literature devoted to the safety issues of transit's "special populations." Th is category includes those from outside the United States who must familiarize themselves with the transit infrastructure, as well as 32 million sen ior citizens, 24 million people with some form of disability, and 56 million children under the driving age. Although the authors include school bus riders in th is la tte r figure they refer the reader to other sources for information on school bus safety. They do note that trans i t and paratransit are often used to supplement school bus transportation, particularly for students with special needs or those in rural areas. The authors consider it problematic that there are no uniform reporting standards providing data related to the transit safety problems faced by these groups, thereby making it difficult to address their needs and preferences In an effort to add to the knowledge base on this topic, Stephens et a/. obtained information from transit users from the special populations and professionals who work with these groups, transit agencies, and two focus groups-one comprised of visually-impaired participants, and one with senior citizens Based on their own review of the literature, the analysis of bus transit incident data, and input from the participants in this study, the authors found there to be relatively few 9


Sater Stops tor Vulnerable Customers safety problems during travel on transft vehicles. The potential danger for these users was found to be in their travel to and from the transft vehicles. In general, those with ambulatory disabilities and seniors were the most concerned with safety using public transit; however, those who use transit relatively frequently were found to be less concerned than were others. Stephens et at. attribute this to the development of adaptive strategies for dealing with perceived or potential hazards. While none of the groups judged entering or exiting transit vehicles, bus stops, or transit terminals to be generally unsafe, a majority of the groups co nside red crossing streets to access transit areas a dangerous activity. According to Stephens eta/., the most pervasive safety problems identif ied in this study included: street crossings away from intersections, creating potential danger in getting to transit vehicles; crossing streets at complex signalized intersections, particularly for the visually-impaired and older populations; slipping or falling when entering buses, especially when vehicles and curbs are not aligned; falling within transit vehicles during rapid acceleration or braking; sidewalks or paths cluttered or having street furniture not arranged systematically; improper cues as to where pedestrians are, causing individual's disorientation or getting lost; steep inclines and steps may adversely affect many with ambulatory disabilities; and, lack of good quality auditory clues at crossings and on transit vehicles, particularly hazardous for visually-impaired persons. Although the authors state their purpose was not to generate recommendatlons for the improvement of identified safety problems, they did query participants as to the benefit offered by commonly suggested or implemented solutions. Signal 10


Safer SWpS fOr VUIIteYIe <.;usromeYS timing at Intersections was judged to be a beneficial safety measure Audible signals also received a positive response, although i n discuss ion the authors detennined there may be design problems such as the locati on of i ntersectio n buttons for activation and the directionality of the speakers. Most groups considered the placement of street furniture where transit users must walk to be a detriment to safety. Further investigation into customer preferences r egarding safety and security enhancements was conducted by Reed et at. (2000) In t h is study the authors f ocus upon the measuring and improvement of customer perceptions of safety and security in relation to transit use. The 7 4 transit agencies in Michigan were classified as serving a metro area, large urban, medium urban, or all other, which were primarily systems in small urban or rural areas. Surveys were conducted among riders of each of these systems, and the authors received 761 completed questionnaires, which comprised the sample for this study. Passengers generally claimed to feel safe when using public transit but feel less safe when traveling after dark, and those traveling on smaller systems feel somewhat safer than do those using larger systems. In general, women reported feeling less safe than did men, and they were found to be more appreciative of security enhancements. Reed et a/. asked participants to rate the following potential security enhancements: more polic e; more driver safety training; increased light ing at bus stops; see -thro ugh bus shelters; emergency telephones at bus stops; video cameras on transit buses; and, driver-operated emergency alanns. 11


Safer Sto!JS fOY Vllllteraote CI!Stolllers T he installation of emergency telephones at bus stops was the most highly rated enhancement among participants from all strata of systems, with the exception of the medium urban stratum which ranked it second to increased l ighting at stops. Increased lighting was rated the second highest enhancement among all strata except the metro area, which rated more police the second highest. The metro area stratum ranked see-through bus shelters as third highest, and women across the strata favored see-through bus shelters. more driver safety training, and increased lightin g at bus stops. These results indicate to the authors that transit patrons, particularly women, feel less secure waiting at stops than while riding on the bus Reed et a/. suggest that trans it service improvements may relate directly to a passenger's safety at the bus stop, and that participant responses exhibited this fact. Respondents from the metro area stratum claimed to be dissatisfied with printed schedules, signs, and other information at bus stops. In addition, responde nts from all strata were dissatisfied with the limited availability of weekend and night service. The authors assert that waiting time is an important safety consideration in many areas, and the longer a passenger's walt time, the longer that passenger is exposed to potential crime. Limited availability of weekend and ni ght service may also contribute to this hazard if customers are forced to travel further distances to a stop, particularly after dark. Reed et a/. stress the importance of bus frequency and timeliness Based on the results of this study the authors make suggestions for security improveme nts at bus stops to transit agencies, the Michigan Department of Transportation, and the State Legislature. Those recommendations specifically for the transit agencies, with recognition that the appropriateness of each is agency-specific include: gather and analyze bus stop-level crime data to direct the policing of stops ; identify stops that need improved lighting or other such enhancements; relocate bus stops away from h igh crime areas ; and direct other safety enhancements; 12


Safer Stops fOr V1t111erable Customers collaborate with police and security pe r sonnel to increase presence at stops and major transit transfer centers, particular l y the most crime-prone stops; emergency telephones at bus stops; i ncrease lighting at bus stops that are i nsuffic i ently lit; improve signage at stops wit h out adequate i nfo r mation; r e locate bus stops from areas such as dark alleys and abandoned buildings that may exp ose .passengers to undue crime risk; install onboa r d or b u s stop video surve i llance for routes in high crime areas ; although the authors do note that customers may not necessari l y feel more secure and the cameras may d ispl ace the cri me to areas without cameras requiring police attention elsewhere; and, provide more f r equent service and better schedule adherence to min i mize passenger wait times and exposure to potential crime. Reed et a/. suggest that the M i chigan Department o f Transportation shou l d encourage and assist tra n sit agenc i es i n the i mplementation of safety and security en h ancements. Further, they r ecommend that design guidelines be developed for b u s stop she l ters, l ighting, and s i gnage. With regar d to legis lati on, the authors recommend that the State L egislature increase the penalt i es for crimes aga i nst bus drivers an d passengers. They co n tend such l eg i s l ation must include passengers who are victimized while wait i n g at a bus stop because these areas can be considered crime locations Wallace eta/. (1999) found simi l ar results i n an ear1ier study on transit safety and security enhancements that had already been made in Ann Arbor, Michigan. A l though specifically focused on improvements made at trans i t centers, the authors' find i ngs regarding increased lighting and police presence mirror that of Reed eta/. (2000), and can generally be extended to individua l bus stops as well. Furthermore, Wallace et a/. also found that women fe l t l ess safe overa ll than d id men and that they wer e more l ikely to notice and to apprec i ate measures taken t o improve safety and security The authors used survey data collected from fixed route users during 1997 and 1998 to assess custome r responses to safety 13


i;afet for V1

Saf-er Stops for Vulnerable Customers Of the safety and security enhancements implemented at the transit centers, the most noticeable to passengers during the 1998 survey were security cameras, f ollowed by more police presence, increased lighting, and finally, emergency telephones. Those improvements resulting in the increased perception of security, however, were more police presence and increased lighting. Although still creat i ng a positive effect emergency telephones and the presence of video cameras had a smaller impact on passenger feelings of security. Wallace at al. note these findings are in contrast to results of the 1 997 survey in which passengers indicated those enhancements that would make them feel more secure were increased lighting and emergency telep h ones, w ith more police and v i deo monitoring scoring much lower. The authors suggest it is the visibility of police compared to telephones that may be responsible for this d i screpancy. Wallace eta/. conclude by stating that based on the results of this study, in order to affect passengers' perceptions, safety and security measures must be visible and noticed. The authors contend, however, that many passengers' perceptions are direct l y related to the characteristics of the passengers themselves rather than the transit service. This is highlighted by the fact that women generally feel less safe than do men, yet the authors note that in this study women were more observant of safety and security enhancements, indicating that as a group they gain more peace of mind from such improvements. Nsour (1999) also addresses the concern expressed by women in relation to their feelings of safety and security In a study involving 381 transit users, 531 non-users, and 25 transit agencies, Nsour found that security ranked fourth among all non-users as their reason for not using the bus, and safety only "accounted for a small portion of responses (8). In response to a direct question as to whether issues of safety and secur i ty are prevent i ng them from using bus transit, 27.9 percent of fema l e respondents answered positively compared to 12. 3 percent of male respondents. The author also found that regardless of sex the overall perception of risks related to safety and security is higher among non users (17 percent) than users (six percent). 15


safer S!Oj)S tor Vulnerable Custon.ers Like Reed eta/. (2000) Nsour asserts that longer wait times are directly related to passenger feelings of insecurity, yet notes that in this study wait times were not recognized by any of the participating transit agencies as a security factor. However, punctuality of buses and the uncertainty of their arrival were found to be significant to transit users in terms of persona l security. Nsour states that many users suggested increasing the frequency of buses as a means of increasing security, but the author does not address the feasibility of doing so. Further evidence of women s feelings of vulnerability is provided by Bell (1998). This author discusses women's experience and perception in relation to community safety in general. and discusses public transportation as an issue within that topic. Bell states that women have higher use levels of the public real m than do men, although they utilize a narrower geographic range. They are more likely to f r equent shopping centers, parks pathways, residential areas, and public transit areas, all of which are "vulnerable to crime or incivility" (4 ). Bell reports that women feel less secure using public transportation than i n other areas of the general community, but that crime statistics show they are actually at a lower risk of crime. Bell claims that women's experience with regard to safety in urban areas i s different than that of men. Women's fear of violence and crime often affects their use of urban areas and the public realm Older women in part icu lar are more likely to alter their lifestyles and routines in response to their fear of crime than are men thereby affecting their quality of life. Specifically, Bell states that women are most fearful of the following situations: any mode of transportation other than the car; going out at night; walking to the nearest shops; use of public transportation, most particularly train travel at night; use of a public telephone; walking to a friend 's house; walking thro ugh a park or walking home from local destinations such as movie theaters, restaurants, and bars; 16


fOY V1t111era01e (.;ltSWIIIeYS either end of a journey involving public transportation, specifically waiting at a bus stop or walking from a station to a parked car; use of city center parking lot s, part icu larly at night and if a multi-story facility; driving alone at n i ght; and, open spaces such as parks and the countryside and pathways such as alleyways and underpasses. According to Bell, the level of activity in an area and its degree of enclosure also affect women's perception of security. Women are generally fearful of deserted spaces which lead them to feel vulnerable to attack by a stranger because there are no other people in the area to deter or prevent the attack. With regard to more enclosed spaces, women are fearful because of the limited number of exits and the potential for attackers to hide outside the view of others. Bell argues that transit stops are particularly vulnerable to criminal activity and there i s a great need to promote safety and security in these areas. Specifically, the author recommends that stops be located, designed, and managed to ensure the security of transit users. This would mean loca ting bus s tops in areas of high activity, with surveillance from passers-by, and with good maintenance aod lighting. Bell also mentions Crime Preventions Through Envi ronmental Design (CPTED) and other design or planning strategies as means of improving the safety and security of public transportation. These topics will be discussed further in the following section of this report. With specific regard to the transportation needs and preferences of senior citizens, Ritter et a/. (2002) conducted a nation-wide survey of 2,422 adults age 50 and above. The authors surveyed respondents about a variety of transportation-related topics such as their mode use, personal mobility, social interaction, and levels of satisfaction with respect to each. Participants were also asked about their problems with various transportation modes. Regardless of the availability of public transportation in their respective locations ; participants were asked to determine the following ten situations presented them with a large problem, a small prob lem, or no problem. 17


fOr VU!HtYat>le CUS!Oll1erS crime; unavailable destinations; takes time; accessib i lity; difficult transfers; stations and vehicles not maintained; too expensive; service information; difficulty boarding; and, getting a seat. Of those situations most relevant to bus stops, crime was considered a large problem by 16 percent of respondents and a small problem by 23 percent. Unavailable destinations were found to be a l arge problem for 24 percent and a small problem for 14 percent of survey participa n ts Although the authors do not define the category takes time specifically, waiting time is often considered a security issue at bus stops simply due to the potential of exposure to dangerous situations Sixteen percent of survey respondents rated takes time to be a large problem, whi l e 22 percent consider it a small problem. With regard to accessibility, 20 percent considered it to be a large problem and it was rated to be at least a small problem by 11 percent of participants. Difficult transfers was rated a large problem by 13 percent of respondents and a small problem by 15 percent. Regarding stations and vehicles not being maintained, 11 percent rated this a large problem while 14 percent considered it to be a small problem. Seven percent of respondents considered service information to be a large prob l em and nine percent of survey participants considered it a small problem Difficulty boarding may also relate to bus stops, particularly in thei r design, and four percent of respondents rated this a large problem and nine percent considered it to be a small problem. When the results are examined according to age categories, difficulty boarding represented a large problem for a higher percentage of respondents age 75 and 18


older (11 percent) t han it did for respondents age 50 to 74 (four percent). Th e authors also assert that the heallh and disability status (HDS) and driving status of respondents i n this older age category affect their perception of the magnitude of public transportation problems. Those age 75 and older with poor HDS were twice as likely to indicate large problems as were those in the same age group with excellent HDS. Non-drivers i n this age group generally have the same responses as those with poor HDS. Ritter et a/. also address problems with other modes for seniors and discuss the implications of transportation policy for older persons. Cough lin (2001) explored the transportation perceptions and preferences of senior citizens age 75 and older through three focus groups and 17 inperson interviews. All participants identified public transportation as a less attractive opt i o n than driving or being driven, primarily due to concerns for personal safety and security. The author notes, however, that participants identified trans i t positively as offering some l evel of independence in that they did not have to ask others for a ride. Participants expressed general concern about going out at night, but the author reports this concern was particularly strong with regard to using public transportation. Some participants asserted that concerns for their personal safety and security at night meant public transportation was not a realistic mode when making trips in the evening for entertainment purposes. Although not specifically queried about their needs and preferences at bus stops, Coughlin's results indicate a general fear of public transit among the senior participants. The author quotes one participant as saying she was afraid of "gangs and young hoods" that she may encounter while using transit (11 ). According to Coughlin, participants agreed that transit has "inherent negative attributes," the two pr imary factors being the time spent waiting and waiting in bad weather, both directly related to bus stops. The author concludes with a discussion on the implications for policy-making based on the findings in the study. 19


titqer tiWpS fOY VUlii6TQOl6 lw'llSW>ItcYS The needs and preferences of transit customers as well as potential customers are integral to understanding how to make bus stops safer and more secure, particularly for vulnerable populations such as women, children, senior citizens, and those with disabilities. The literature on this topi c reveals that women and older people have somewhat similar concerns r elated to fear of crime and the security of the surrounding environment of bus stops. The perceptions of these frequent patrons are of great int eres t to transit agencies seeking to increase their ridership levels while maximizing lim ited funding. Bus stops that are safe and secure, both in appearance and i n actuality, serve to promote a positive image of public transportation as well as that of the individual transit agency. 20


:>are swps ror v IILI1eraote (..,11S!DIIlerS Transit Stop Environments As previously ment i oned both transit users and non-users lend to consider bus slops to be part of the overall transit environment. This transit environment includes more than the physica l spot where the bus act u ally stops. Access to the bus stop and the area immed i ately surround i ng the stop are generally thought to be part of the transit envi r onment and these factors should be taken into consideration in the location and design of bus stops St r eet furn i ture i s often a factor in the safety and security of bus stop s and contributes to the i mage of the transit environme nt. Furthermore the ma i ntenance of c l ean, safe, and secure bus s t ops and their surrounding env i ronments greatly affects the pe r cept i on o f safety and security, as well as the actual i ty of these factors in the trans i t environment. Transit agencies community groups, and departments of transportation are increasing l y employing innovative strategies to improve the s afety and security of transit stop environments. Continu i ng innovation in transit services is necessary i f everyday services are to be available to the dr i ving as well as the non-driving pu b lic According to th e American Public Transportation Association (APTA) more sen ior citizens young mothers, child r en and peop l e with d i sab i lities could access transit if system and community designs were i mproved. Fo r example, approx i mately one in five o l der non-drivers could access fixed-route bus service if there were bette r s i dewalks and resting p l aces. The l ocation and design of bus stops a r e typically primary concerns among transit patrons. These factors may often present challenges to transit agencies attempting to satisfy their c ustomers, provide safe and effic i ent service work within budget, and maintain traffic flow. T he Te x as Transportation I nstitute was cont r acted through the Transit Cooperative Researc h Program (TCRP) to develop guidelines for the location and design of bus stops i n a variety of operating environments. T he research team conducted a literature review surveys and interviews with those identified as stakeholders, and a review of the manuals of 28 transit agen c ies with regard to bus stop l ocat i on and design The 21


Sater stops tor Vulnerable Customers guidelines developed from their review are presented in three sections, the "big picture," the street-side, and the curb-siae. The research team defines safety as it relates to bus stops as "the freedom from danger and risk" (1996:5). Within a transit environment this includes one's relationship to buses and to general traffic, as well as the buses' relationship to other vehicles. For pedestrians, safety includes the distance of a bench to the flow of traffic on a busy street or being able to cross the street safely to access the bus stop. The return of the bus to the flow of traffic is also a safety concern. The authors note that pedestrians, bus passengers, buses, and private vehicles may all b e involved in safety issues at or near a bus stop. With regard to security, the authors contend this relates to one's feeling of well-being in the transit environment and that it involves neighborhood residents, transit patrons, and bus drivers. Security may be affected by lighting at stops, potential hiding places su rroundi ng bus stops, and the visibility of the bus stop from the street and nearby land uses. Following the determination of ridership potential, the authors cite safety and avoiding the imped iment of bus, car, or pedestrian flows as the most critical factors in bus stop loc ation. They argue for the place!'llent of stops in areas where common improvemen ts, such as benches and shelters, may be made in the public right-of -way. On-site evaluation i s required prior to the final decision regarding stop location. The following are safety factors to be considered in the placement of bus stops: passenge r protection from passing traffic ; access for people with disabilities; all-weather surface to step from/to the bus; proximity to passenger crosswalks and curb ramps; proximity to major trip generators; convenient passenger transfers to routes with nearby stops; proximity of stop for the same route in the opposite direction; and, street lighting. 22


Sater StqJ.S tor Vul11erable Cllsto111ers Within the discussion of placement considerations the authors present a comparative table of the advantages and disadvantages of far-side, near-side, and mid-block stops. With regard to bus stop z one design types, the authors provide discussion and a comparative table of the types of stops: curb-side, bus bay, open bus bay, queue jumper bus bay, and nub. Several figures and photographs are provided illustrating the design and usage of each. The authors also discuss and provide illustrations of vehicle characteristics as well as roadway and i ntersection design. According to the research team some general safety considerations in the design of bus stops include: the stop must be located so passengers may alight and board with reasonable safety; the stopped bus will affect sight distance for pedestrians using the parallel and transverse crosswalks at the intersection; the stopped bus will affect sight distance for pa rallel traffic and cross traffic; and, the bus affects the flow of traffic as it enters or leaves a stop. Additional considerations include curb length. condition of the curb lane. and the curb height, all of which may affect passenger safety, particularly that of older or disabled people. The authors contend that if there are poor pavement conditions in the curb lane drivers will avoid it, stopping the bus away from the curb. The potential hazard lies in the Increased height between the ground and first step of the bus as well as from vehicles such as bicycles moving between the curb and the bus. Street light ing is also mentioned as an important factor in the safety of bus stops because it allows bus drivers to see waiting patrons and It assists drivers of other vehicles in being able to see passengers boarding and alighting the bus. Curb-side factors are also relevant to the safety and security of bus patrons. The authors argue that defined pedestrian access to and from the bus stop must be 23


Safer Stops for Vul11erable Cwstoners provided. Proper sidewalks should be constructed of impervious non-slip materials and should link the intersection or land use as directly as possible with the bus stop. They should be a minimum of three feet, preferably four to five feet wide, to accommodate wheelchairs, and wheelchair ramps should be available at all intersections. Discontinuous sidewalks from the intersectio n to the bus stop facilitate pedestrian access in those areas with limited or no sidewalks. Further, such features contribute to eliminating bus stop access through uneven grass or exposed soil, which may pose accessibility difficulties for seniors and the disabled, particularly in inclement weather. The authors note that when possible, sidewalks and bus stops should be coordinated with existing street lighting to provide some level of lighting and security for the area. The authors devote a section to the discussion of ADA gu idelines and how they relate to the location and design of transit stops. They also provide an illustration of the minimum dimensions of an accessible bus stop pad and shelter. Additionally, a list of resources and references related to ADA accessibility guidelines is included. Often considered to be security improvements by transit patrons, bus stop shellers are discussed in terms of location, conftguration and orientation, advertising, developer provision, and artistic and thematic designs. With regard to passenger and pedestrian safety the authors state that shelters with advertising make these factors a greater concern because advertising panels may restrict views into and out of the shelter. To mitigate th is potential problem, the authors recommend that panels and kiosks be placed downstream of traffic flow. Benches may also contribute to a safe waiting place for patrons, particularly senior citizens and those with disabilities. The authors provide the following guidelines with regard to the placement of benches at bus stops: avoid placing benches in completely exposed locations; coordinate with existing shade trees if possible; 24


coordinate placement locations with existing street lighting to increase visibility and security at the stop; avoid placing benches in undeveloped areas of the right-of-way; they should be located on a non-slip, properly drained, concrete pad; place benches away from driveways to increase passenger safety and comfort; at least two, and preferably four feet between the bench and the back-face of the curb should be maintained; as the traffic speed increases, distance from the bench to the curb should be increased for passenger safety and comfort; adhere to general ADA mobility clearances between the bench and other elements at the bus stop; bench should not be placed on the wheelchair landing pad; and, additional waiting room near the bench should be provided at bench-only stops to encourage passengers to wait at the stop itself The authors also include an illustration of a conceptual bench and waiting pad design. In addition to benches, the authors discuss route information, vending machines, bicycle storage facilities, and garbage receptacles as amenities, and provide illustrations or photographs of optimal design and placement. Telephones are also classified as amenities at bus stops and customers often consider them security enhancements. The authors note, however, that telephones may contribute to illegal or unintended activities at the bus stop, such as drug dealing or loitering. The presence of others at a bus stop who are not waiting for a bus may discourage use of that bus stop or. the transit system In general. The authors recommend that agencies consider the potential consequences prior to the installation of telephones at bus stops. Further, they suggest the following guidelines when locating a telephone at or near a bus stop: the telephone and the bus stop waiting area should be separated by distance when possible; general ADA site circulation guidelines should be followed; 25


Sater Sl

:>a fer :.tOpS fOr V IU11era01e UISOOlllers when possible, bus stops should be coordinated with existing street lighting to Improve visibility; and, stops should be located next to existing land uses to enhance surveillance of the bus stop. The authors also include a comparative table of the advantages and disadvantages of those amenities discussed in the report. They conclude with a brief discussion of the materials used in the construction of bus stops and bus stop amenities. A table of the advantages and disadvantages of wood, metal, concrete, plastic, and glass is also provided. Nsour (1g99) conducted sight investigations of 12 bus stops in California to assess the safety and security of their surrounding environments and the paths leading to and from the stops. The author notes few factors contributing to problems of safety and security at these particular stops. Some stops were located far from crosswalks, resulting in some level of jaywalking. Nsour also found there was little room for vehicles to go around stopped buses, and because drivers would either have to stop completely or quickly go around the buses, it created a potential hazard for accidents. He calls for the location of bus stops in proper relation to crosswalks and being in a safe environment. Although providing no discussion of the implications, the author states that at some bus stops there were people "hanging around in very suspicious ways" (9). He asserts, however, that crime levels within any transit environment are essentially a reflection of the crime levels of the area in which the service operates. In his survey of 25 transit agencies, the author notes this was recognized by some of the agencies. Nsour stresses the necessity of public education on the part of transit agencies regarding the relative safety and security of bus transit, particularly as compared to traveling by car. This recommendation is in response to the finding that transit non-users had a higher level of fear regarding the safety and security of public transit than did users. The location and design of bus stops in Los Angeles have received a fair amount of study, particularly with regard to crime and environmental attributes of the area 27


surrounding a bus stop. L oukaitou-Sideris (1999) first presents a general overview of bus stop cr ime, and contends that women, children, senior citizens, and the disabled are the most fearful and vulnerable within bus stop settings. She argues tha t concems of safety and security are most p r ominent among inner city residents, many of whom are dependent upon public transportation. The author surveyed 95 women and 1 07 men at six of ten bus stops in Los Angeles identified as high-crime" stops. Fifty percent of these bus riders reported feeling unsaf e at stops, but only one fourth reported feeling unsafe on the bus itself. Of the women who were surveyed, 59 percent reported feel i ng unsafe wh ile waiting f or the bus as d i d 4 1 percent of the men. The author declares that while there has been much discuss i on on countermeasures to transit cr i me. transit agencies have focused upon police presence and the use of security hardware in transit vehicles rather than the environmenta l design attributes that may contribute to bus stop crime. Location and design are critical to deterring crime at bus stops, and land uses near the stop can greatly affect its safety and security. Those land uses considered to be negative" by Loukaitou-Sideris i nclude: liquor stores; bars; seedy motels/hotels; check-cashing establishments; pawn shops; vacant lots/buildings; and, adult book stores and movie theaters. According to the author such land uses can often contribute to crime because they encourage "antisocial behavior concentrate l ucrative targets, and attract potential criminals" (406). She recommends either not locating a stop near such establishments or at least careful monitoring of the stop. L oukaitou-Sideris also notes that other micro-environmental features may contribute to crime levels at bus stops. Those stops in areas of general neglect 28


:>UftY I>W/JS fO'Y VIILntYUOit\.MSWllteYS with graffiti and litter suggest no one cares about or regulates the area. Bus stop s near surface parking lots, vacant buildings or other such empty spaces isolat e people who are waiting for the bus, increasing feelings of vulnerability. Walls, bushes, tunnels, and other such features may provide hiding places for criminals, as well as areas of entrapment for victims. In contrast, stops located near well-maintained businesses with open storefronts indicate there are loca l stakeholders i n the bus stop and enhance the visibility of waiting passengers. The author also no tes the value of good lighting, visibility from passing traffic and nearby businesses, and unobstructed shelters at bus stops. Siting bus stops near negative land uses with poor maintenance and with obstructed views into and out of the stop should be avoided or modified. If t hese options are not cost effective, she recommends moving the bus stop to a more appropriate lo cation as this is a relatively simple and inexpens ive solution. According to Loukaitou-Sideris, different environmental conditions incite different types of crime. While isolated areas are typically associated with more serious crimes, crowded situations are the choice for pickpockets. To mitigate these types of crimes at bus stops, the author again recommends strategic environmental design. Widening of sidewalks and the creation of nubs serve to decrease the amount of congestion between waiting bus passengers and other pedestrians. Shelter d esigns with bars or other features can also separate the two groups and may be very helpful at extremely crowded times. Loukaltou Sideris' final recommendation is that "nonessential structures" such as newspaper stands, signs, and poles be avoided to i ncrease the f unctioning space of the sidewalk area (407). Using the same survey data, such issues are again addressed by Loukaltou-Sideris and Liggett (2000). Continuing the argument that environmental attributes contribute to bus stop crime, the second phase of this research is presented by Loukaitou-Sideris at a/. (2001 ). The results are also discussed in Ligget at a/. (2001 ). In this phase researchers expanded the study to Include a larger samp le of high-crime as well as low-crime stops in Los Angeles, and incorporated quantitative methodologies in assessing the effects of the built environment on bus stop crime. The bus stops were analyzed at the intersection level. Although the c rime data were 29


Mfer fOY VltlllertU>Le <.;J<.StomerS based upon those crimes reported at bus stops, the locations were recorded by transit police according to the street address or closest intersection. The authors note this made it impossible to determine at which stop a crime occurred in areas with multiple stops at an intersection, hence the analysis was performed at the intersection level. L oukaitou-Sideris et a/. present a matrix of the crime data for each intersect ion used and the environmental attributes considered in their analysis The following characteristics were examined with regard to the area surrounding the bus stop/intersection: alley; mid-block connections; multifamily residential; parking structure; surface parking lot; li quor stores; check cashing; vacant lot; vacant building; run-down building; graffrtillilter; public telephones; no visibility; and, no bus shelter. The authors' analysis reveals that particular urban factors and bus stop characteristics may contribute to the impact of crime at a stop. High-crime bus stops were found to have more negative environmental attributes than did their low-crime counterparts. Alleys, mid-block passages, multifamily housing, "undesirable" businesses such as liquor stores and check-cashing establishments, vacant buildings, graffiti, and l itter were identified as elements that correlate with bus stop crime. Furthermore, the proximity of such establishments, most notably l iquor stores, were found to increase the incidence 30


Safer Stol"" for Vub1erabl e CustoH.ers of crime at the stop. Positive characteristics of note were good vis i bility and bus shelters, and lowe r crime areas were those with higher rates of veh i cular traffic Loukaitou-Sideris et a/. conc l ude by acknow l edging the early stage of the research makes it premature to suggest a c ausal relationship between the environmental attributes and the bus stops examined in the study Another study focusing on the location of bus stops and shelters in Los Angeles was prepared by Law and Tay lor (2001 ). The researchers consider how the many objectives of advertising f i rms, l ocal governments, and transit agencies combine to affect the siting of bus stop shelters. Because shelters are typically located on sidewalks, they are frequently controlled by private companies contracted through local governments. The authors contend the needs o f transit agencies and the i r pat r ons are not necessarily taken into account in the decision of where to locate a bus stop shelter. Law and Taylor propose a methodology to optim i ze the location of bus stop she l ters They combine stopc oded b oarding data and headway data to analyze the effectiveness and equ i ty of bus stop shelter location. They found i t possible to increase the time passengers spend wait i ng under a shelter in Los Angeles by 2.3 to 2.4 person-years per day if bus service and patronage considerations were to be incorporated with t hose of the advert i sers. The authors state that the public may avoid using transit if they f eel unsafe or if there is no protection from the elements Shelters t h at are well designed and maintained can greatly enhance the perception of safety and increase transit use. The authors argue that an equitable method of placing b u s stop shelters would concern itself with the stop's level of use by older people and the disabled an d the physical abilities of these u sers. F u rther, all bus r i ders should receive consideration so that the pro p ortion of t i me ride r s spend wait i ng at a shelter is maximized compared to the wait time of all passenge rs. This statement i s tempered with the note that there are some cases in which all bus riders should not be treated equally. Regard l ess of the average number of wait i ng passengers at stops a shelter may be warranted if the stop is used primarily by seniors and/or the disabled. Law and Taylor suggest several placement policies to 3 1


Safer Stops fOr VI

Safer Swps for Vulnerable Cl<.ltomers While these design standards and guidelines were developed specificaHy for the Grand Valley Transit service area, they may be applicable In other areas as well. These guidelines are meant to balance the needs of all roadw ay u sers, including those using transit. Arlington County, Virginia has also made advances in the development of bus stop design standards and the assessment of bus stops. The Arlington County Bus Stop Evaluation Program was developed under contract with the KFH Group, a private consu lt ing f i rm in Bethesda, Maryland. Researchers collected information regarding the bus stop improvement programs from five transit agencies: Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon, Portland, Oregon; Capital Metro of Austin, Texas; PACE Suburban Bus in Arlington Heights, Illinois; Pierce Transit of Tacoma, Washington; and Chittenden County Transit Authority in Burlington, Vermont. The recommended bus stop design standards are addressed in three parts: bus stop placement; minimum bus stop elements; and passenger amenities at stops. With regard to bus stop placement and the and security of vulnerable customers, the standards note general pedestrian safety and access, traffic safety, and the availability of adequate rights-of-way in compliance with ADA accessibility standards. This section also presents guidelines for stop spacing placement in relation to intersections and roadways, curb clearance, and several other factors such as sidewalk conditions, compatibility with adjacent properties, on-street parking, and proximity to major trip generators With regard to lighting it is stipulated that bus stops served after dark should be illuminated at night. The lig ht source is preferably t he overhead street light, and if this i s not possible the installation of adequate lighting should be cons idered. A table is also included in this sec tion detailing the advantages and disa dvan tages of near-side, far-side, and mid-block stop locations, including recommendations as to when each type is most appropriate. The next section presents suggested standards for the minimum characteristics of a bus stop that make it functional for bus and patron use, including those with disabilities. The la nding area, p edes trian connections, signage, curbside safety 33


Safer Swps fOr Vu111erable Customers . and security, and newspaper boxes (as potentially inhibiting access} are briefly addressed. With regard to the la nding area of the bus stop, accommodating wheelchairs is a particular concern. The dimensions, slope, surface material, and relative height to the street are all addressed from th is perspective. The fo llow ing is a summary of t he recommendations regarding landing areas: dimensions-continuous, unobstructed solid area contiguous to the curb that measures at least five feet parallel to the street and at least eight feet perpendicular to the street; this is expressed in a diagram; slope-must be parallel to the slope of the roadway so that wheelchair lifts or ramps may be deployed effectively; surface material-concrete is the preferred surface; in uncurbed shoulder areas the landing area may be constructed of asphalt; and, height relative to the street-for pedestrian safety the landing area should be elevated above the street level. The researchers note that with regard to the minimum bus stop elements, new stops should not be established at locations that do not meet the minimum characteristics, and that the relocation or improvement of stops should ensure that the landing area meets or exceeds the standards. Curbside safety and security are addressed as follows: location of storm drains and catch basins-can put passengers at risk of catching a foot under one when alighting or deboarding the bus; uneven surfaces-could cause a passenger to fall; slope of terrain surrounding landing area-passengers may be in danger of falling into the travel lane or an adjacent ditch or ravine; presence of hazardous objects-possible injury from broken street furniture or jagged edges; surface traction-the example is given of stone aggregate being extremely slippery for wheelchair users when it Is wet; water accumulation areas-in addition to general hazards, can produce icy surfaces in colder climates; 34


' overgrown bushes-potential security concern and could create accessibility problems along sidewalks and landing areas; other obstacles in the sidewalk-In addition to accessibility issues, could force pedestrians to walk into the street; and, area lighting-mentioned again in this section in relation to passenger safety and security as well as improving visibility for the approaching bus driver. Shelters, advertising, benches, garbage receptacles, lighting, landscaping, and ITS features are classified as "amenities" at bus stops. With regard to shelters and benches, the researchers recommend consideration of the following: bus stops with ridership of at least 40 boardings per day should be priority candidates for shelters; benches may be installed independently at stops with lowe r daily boardings but where some amenity is desired or justified; strength and durability of structure and materials; resistance of materials to weather conditions and vandalism; maintenance issues; potential "greenhouse" effect of roof design in hot weather; appropriateness of design to the neighborhood; required dimensions of the land in g area to ensure wheelchair accessibility; benches inside a shelter should face the street and be positioned to allow for wheelchair access and coverage within the shelter; recommended layout is at le ast three feet from the bench to one side of the she lter, making the be nch width no more than seven feet in l ength; and, wheelchair accessibil ity at the bus stop, whether a bench is inside a shelter or standing independently. Diagrams of Arlington County's standard shelter design and one exhibiting guidelines for optimal accessibility are also provided. Although garbage receptacles have no direct bearing on customer safety and security, as noted in previously mentioned studies the appearance and surrounding area of a bus stop are important to passengers' feelings of safety 35


Safer S!IJI'S for Vulnerable Customers and security. The standards in the Arlington County report call for the placement of garbage receptacles at stops where litter is a frequent problem. Further, they should be positioned to encourage their use but not block wheelchair or pedestrian access to the lan ding pad, bus, shelter, sidewalk, or info rmat ion area. A location immediately to the left or right of a shelter is recommended, although it is noted that sidewalk conditions and right-of-way limitations may be prohibitive. With regard to lighting, as mentioned elsewhere in KFH's report, it is most desirable to take advantage of existing street lighti ng otherwise consideration must be given to the installation of l igh ting at stops served after dark. I n addition, while landscaping may enhance the appearance of the bus stop, it should be positioned and maintained so as not to create a hazard for safety or accessibility. Plans for future ITS features such as real -time bus arrival information should be addressed through the provision of electrical hardwiring at all new stops and improvements to existing stops. A means of assessing the existing bus stops in Arlington County was also developed in accordance with the standards discussed above, and is included in the present document as Appendix A. Reuter and Zegeer (1998) also consider transit stops to be pedestrian areas necessitating consideration of pedestrian n eeds In the design and placement of stops. The authors present briefly some general guidelines for the location of far side and near-side bus stops, street furniture, wheelchair access, ligh ting, curb height, and signage. Again, these authors make no specific recommendations for more vulnerable populations, but several topics are applicable in this discussion. As mentioned previously, street furniture is often considered to enhance the appearance and perception of "ownership" of bus stops Reuter and Zegeer recommend that support poles, newspaper machines, and other permanent fixtures be minimized at the farthest end of the stop, as this is where buses usually stop. With regard to wheelchair access, the authors note that lifts on buses extend several feet from the side of the bus and therefore recommend 36


Safer Sto)JS tor Vulnerable CIIStomers there should be a five-foot by eight-foot landing pad at the stop so that wheelchair lifts can be deployed safely. They also state that if shelters are installed, there should be sufficient clearance between the edge of the curb and the sheller to allow for easy access and maneuverability of a wheelchair. Reuter and Zegeer acknowledge that lighting is a deterrent to criminal activity and that a well-lit stop assists the bus driver in observing waiting patrons and passing motorists in seeing those who are boarding and alighting the bus. Of particular concern regarding seniors and the disabled, the authors note that the most dangerous area on the vehicle itself is the step well, and a brightly lit stop will assist passengers in judging the distances and locations of curbs and steps. Finally, Reuter and Zegeer suggest that bus stop locations should be reviewed periodically to determine whether modifications are necessary. Routine studies of pedestrian accidents should be conducted in order to identify those inte rsections or midblock locatio ns where an accident may be related to bus stop design or loca tion They state that sites with one or more bus-related accidents should be reviewed further for possible relocation or improvements to the bus stop. Vogel and Pettinari (2002) also contend that bus stops are areas of pedestrian concern and safety is sues are often deciding factors in whether one uses transit or not. Concurring with Loukaitou-Sideris and others, these authors assert the "owned" environment provides customers with a perception and reality of personal safety and security as compared to an area that appears to be abandoned or not well-maintained. Areas of mixed and compatible land use and activity are more desirable in terms o f location for bus stops because they contribute to transit use as well as personal safety and security. Visibility is also critical in t he creation of safe and secure transit environments. According to Vogel and Pettinari, crimes are typically committed in deserted areas hidden from the view of others, and those who do fall victim in visible or busy areas are usually taken to a more secluded location. Sightlines within the area of transit stops must therefore be thoughtfully designed. The authors cite columns, walls, fences, shrubbery, and level changes as potential hazards that 37


fOT VUllteYaUte L;I!SUJtlters could obstruct sightlines and the view of others or conceal an assailant. Related to visibility, lighting is a l so an important component of a safe and secure transit stop. Lighting sho!Jid provide a clear view of peoples' faces and multiple sources o f light provide even illumination, casting fewer shadows in addition to providing a deterrent to vandalism However too much or too bright lighting may create the "fish bowl effect" and actually compromise customer safety and security by not allowing the transit user to see out of a shel t er but allowing others to see in the she l ter. Maintenance such as replacing lights and trimming trees is essentia l to ensuring visibility at a bus stop Vogel and Pettinari refer to small fen c ed areas serving as transit stops as "people pens" which restri c t pedestr i an and trans i t p atron mobility. They contend that feel i ng safe and secure is dependent on one's sense of mobility and the freedom of movement should be factored into a stop's design Bus stops should be spacious because people are most comfortab l e when they are not forced to be too c l ose physically to others waiting at the stop. Adequate space will allow someone to move to another part of the bus stop if desired and elim i nate crowding. Readability is also cons i dered to be an important e l ement of a safe and secure bus stop because humans fee l safer and a c tually are safer if they know where they are. where they are going, and are able to follow a c l ear path to get there According to the authors visual cues can make the transit environment readable or confusing. An environment or design unique to a particular area or stop and clear, assessable signs can provide visual cues. However, objects or surfaces are considered to be the most important v i sual cues Features such as paved pathways, street furniture, and bollards can assist patrons in getting to the stop and buffer them from potent i al danger. Vogel and Pettinari consider ownership, activity and l and use, visibi l ity, mobility and readability to be the pr i nciples of personal safety and sec u rity in relation to transit stop environments. The design of the most effective stops accounts for all of these principles. Several sketches and photographs throughout the report 38


Safer Stat's for VUI11erabte Customers serve as examples of the most desirable as well as the most i neffective designs in customer safety and security. Needle and Cobb (1997) discuss some of the crime prevention strategies undertaken by 45 transit agencies responding to a questionnaire survey. The authors found that the transit agencies use seven classes of strategies in attempts to deter transit crime in general, listed in descending order of their perceived effectiveness: uniformed officers; no n-uniformed officers ; employee involvement; education and informat ion; community outreach; technology; and, architecture and design. It is in te resting to n ote that other literature sources rev iewed for this synthesis consider architecture and particularly design to be important in crime prevention, yet they comprise the seventh category in the above list of strategies. The core strategy of most respond ing agencies with police forces remained the use of random and fixed-post uniformed patrols. These efforts included directed patrols, including special foot patrols, bicycle patrol, bus boardings, and patrols addressing "special" situations or populations such as juveniles and the homeless. The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transit Authority uses officers on foot in the "Broadway Corridor," an area served by 87 bus routes originating throughout the city. T he patrols were initiated in an effort to promote neighbor hood revitalization through increased business and security With specific attention to bus stops the Houston Metropolitan T rans it Authority of Harris County (METRO) increased the number of uniformed officers on foot patrol at downtown stops. This was done in response to a request for such action from an organization representing downtown businesses. 39


Like Bell (1998), the authors spec i fically mention (CPTED) as an effective strategy in deterring crime. According to Need l e and Cobb, this approach begins with the des i gn of transit vehic les as well as bus stops. Based on the concept of a connection between crime and the built environment, as discussed by others such as Louka i tou-Sideris Liggett eta/., and Nsour, the authors contend that the manipulation o f t r ansit's physical environment can create situations and features that minimize the number of targets and deter criminal behavior, thereby reducing fear and the incidence of crime within in the transit system. One example of how CPTED has proved effective is its use within Houston's METRO system. The principles of CPTED were conside r ed in the design of new transit centers and in the improvement of existing cente r s and bus stop shelters. METRO police and planners observed bus stops and shelters after dark to determine their crime potential. Improvements such as increased lighting, trimming weeds and grasses around shelters, and relocating shelters away from known drug-dealing locat i ons were implemented i mmediately. General maintenance and clean i ng were also performed to i ncrease the perception of safety at bus stops. METRO'S commitment to CPTED is an established practice-any architect contracted by the system must be trained in CPTED. METRO police encountered no difficu lty in app l ying the concepts of CPTED. Although the plan's success had not been assessed quant i tative l y at the time of Needle and Cobb's report, it was reported that the strategy had been effective to that point. Needle and Cobb present other case studies of transit agency strategies to deter crime, but because they do not include specific reference to bus stops they are not discussed with i n the present review. As previously ment i oned, contemporary public transportation is no longer v i ewed only in terms of operation along designated routes and the picking up and dropping off of passengers. Kikuchi ef a/. (2001) contend that today transit is "cons i dered as the mobility service for one's entire trip from origin to destination including the trip to/from the bus stop as well as the trip onboard" (1-1). Despite this, relatively little focus has been placed on environmental attributes surrounding stops, which include not only the street furniture located at a stop but its paths of access and egress such as street crossing facilities and walkways. 40


According to the authors, convenient, pleasant, and safe access to and from the stop allows for transition between walking mode and transit mode. Such accessibility issues would seem to be of pa rtic ular concern for populations such as senior citizens, the disabled, and women with small children. Recognition of the importance of transit environments on the part of the Delaware Department of Transportation was the imp etus behind the research undertaken by Kikuchi et a/. Following the development of general transit stop design guidelines, the authors selected six stops along the Kirkwood Highway Corr idor and assessed their condition. They then developed recommendation s for bus stop improvements based upon the principles devised in the des i gn guidelines. Those "ideal" bus stop conditions identified by the authors i nclude: convenience to passengers-transit customers are able to reach the stop with minimum effort; path should lead directly t o the stop from nearby trip generators; it should be paved, with ramps or steps installed if necessary, and all features must meet ADA guidelines; safety to passengers-transit customers are able to reach the stop safely and free from anxiety or conflicts related to vehicular traffic; intersection design should incorpora te proper channelization defining the expected path for automobiles and pedestrians; pedestrian crossings and signals should be provided whenever possible and should be clearly marked; at long crossings, a wide median or island is desirable; and sidewalks should be provided at all stop locations; comfort to passenger at the stop-transit customer is. able to feel comfort while waiting at the stop; at a minimum, there is a concrete pad to provide proper footing conditions; benches and shelters are supplemented by trees and greenery if possible; and there is sufficient lighting for patron security and for bus drivers to see waiting customers; amenities-transit customer is provided with reasonable amenities including bus schedules, adequate ligh ting public telephone, and garbage receptacles; 41


ror v m11erao1e utstomers community value-well-designed access i bility and features of bus stops enhance livability and the value of transit in a community; if the transit stop is unsafe or shows signs of neglect the community will view the transit agency negatively and as not being serious about encouraging transit use; community support for bette r bus stops is important; and, consideration for access by people with d i sabil i tie!Hlisabled transit customers are given consideration in all aspects related to safety, including street crossing time for the pedestrian signal phase, sidewalk grade, and possible hand-guiderails Surveys of waiting patrons were also conducted to understand better their pe r ceptions related to bus stop accessibility Kikuchi el a/. found that the majority of respondents chose their bus stop based on its proximity to their trip origin or destination. Only 2.4 percent cited safety and bus stop condit i ons as a factor in bus stop choice. According to the authors this is not surprising given that stops with safe and convenient access are rare in the survey area. They also observe that the weather was "very good" during the survey period and this may have affected participant responses. When asked specifically about the safety of accessibility, 60.3 percent of respondents indicated that crossing the street to access their stop is unsafe. Kikuchi eta/. consider this to be substantial and note there are no street crossing markings or signals at most stops in the survey area The problems and recommended improvements to the six bus stops selected for study are discussed in terms of access i bility street crossing, and intersection. Numerous diagrams and photographs are included to illustrate the points made in the analysis of each stop. Kikuchi et a/. contend that pedestrian crossing is essential to the accessibility of a bus stop, and provide an analysis of pedestrians cha nces in crossing the street and the impacts of a pedestrian crossing signal on vehicular traffic. The authors also i nclude an excerpt from the Delaware Department of Transportation's Bus Stop and Passenger Facilities Policy detailing the guidelines fo r Delaware Transportation Corporation (DTC). That excerpt is included in this document as Appendix B. 42


S<:l[er fOY V11111era01e Those sources reviewed here appear to be in general agreement regarding the transit stop environment. The perception and the reality of safety and security at the bus stop may be determining factors for some customers in the decision to use or not to use transit or particular transit stops. Accessibility to and from the stop, the surrounding env iron ment, and the provision of street furniture are also issues of safety and security, particularly among groups such as women-whose concern would extend to children as cit izens. and those with disabilities. The transit stop environment is now being approached by transit agencies, local governments, transportation departments, and community groups as more than the single point of loadin g and unloading passengers. A more holistic perspective is being taken as the area surrounding a bus stop is increasingly recognized as a factor contribut ing to its safety and security. Accessibility, design, location, and maintenance of stops must be considered carefully in the planning of new stops or improvements to existing facilities. 43


Technologies Technological innovations occur at a rapid pace in the contemporary culture of electronics, security, energy, ITS, and information technologies. Many advances hold potential fo r the transit industry and are being used by agencies as they strive to create safe and secure t ransit environments for their customers. While such technologies are undoubtedly of benefrt to the general transit-using public, they may be of particular relevance to populations such as senior citizens or the disabled who often have different or additional needs as compared to the general public. Technical innovations may enhance the overall quality of life for special needs populations through safer, more secure, accessible, and user-friendly bus stops. As noted by Reed et a/. and Nsour, the length of wait times can be a factor in passengers' feelings of security at the bus stop. Uncertainty in when one's bus will arrive and how long the wait time will be is often cause for fear or discomfort among waiting passengers, particularly among those such as women and seniors who generally feel more susceptible to crime. Real-time information systems are useful in providing electronic updates to passengers as to how lon g their wait will be. GPS-based automatic vehicle location (AVL) technology enables transit agencies to track buses en route and provide real-time schedule i nformation using predictive software. Depending upon the configuration of the system, real-time information may be available to passengers via telephone hotlines the internet, cellular telephones, hand-held PDAs, LED displays at the bus stop itself, or kiosks installed in traffic-heavy areas (Carter 2002). Among others, the Denver Regional Transportation District (RTD) provides rea l time arrival information to its customers via a toll-free voice-activated telephone system known as Talk-n-Ride. The R TD also currently has 52 information kiosks installed at various transit locations and major activity centers throughout the region. Kiosks will be installed at four new locations In 2003 and an additional 23 have been proposed to rece ive kiosks in the future. Using the information kiosks, 44


&!fer StoplS ror Vltllleral)le t:ltStonters RTD customers can check route and schedule information, view maps, get information on programs and services, and plan trips using the RTD It inerary Planner. NextBus Information Systems, Inc provides integrative technologies supporting real-time information for the Washington Metropolitan Area Trans it Authority (Metro), among others. Metro bus customers are able to access bus arrival information for stops along the Ballston-Farrugut Square Line via the internet or personal web-enabled wireless devices, as well as shelters with electronic displays at major stops and transfer points. As with any new technology a fair amount of public education is necessary to provide awareness and training for the new system. A full-color glossy informational insert was placed in local newspapers as a means of reaching the public In little more than a year of operation the NextBus system has proven effective in providing passengers with real-time arrival information. Although no formal public opinion has been solicited at this point, response to the system has been quite favorable Anecdotal information indicates that some passengers have even become dependent upon the system's capabilities of providing their bus arrival times. While no major technical difficulties have been reported, minor human error did create problems upon the NextBus implementation. At times, some bus drivers were either keying in incorrect bus identification information or not keying in the information at all Also, with only eight buses equipped with the NextBus technology, it is crucial that those are the buses assigned to the Ballston Farrugut Square route. The garage did at times send a non-equipped bus onto the NextBus route. Both of these issues were resolved with further training of drivers and garage personnel. 45


[OT VUil!eYaDLe <.;I!StOIMeYS Figure 1: The Process of NextBus Technology (NextBus I nformation Systems, Inc website). 46


&afer tor vuteraDte custo111ers While generally considered a factor of conv e nience by passengers, real-time information can also be of particular value to transit customers seeking to minimize their waiting time at the bus stop. Arrival information may be accessed from the security of one's home or a welll it public area thereby reducing the anxiety level of a long wait at the bus stop. Transit agencies have realized benefits using AVL technology as well. Carter notes that the Milwaukee County Trans i t System has had great success since installing AVL fleet-wide in 1995; the number of buses that were running off-schedule was reduced by 40 percent. As previously discussed bus stop shelters are one of the features most desired by transit customers. As the technologies in customers hands and on the bus have advanced, so too have the techno l ogies of the "smart" shelters. Better understanding of customer perceptions and preferences related to safety and security has been of great benefit i n the design of shelters that protect from the elements while they create a safe r and more secure environment for waiting bus passengers Furthermore, materials are now being used in shelter construction that can reduce vandalism and therefore its associated costs, which benefit both the community and the transit agency. I n order to provide real-time information to passengers waiting at the stop, AVL is installed at shelters as well as on the vehicles themselves T his allows for various means of relaying information to customers at the stop o r through wireless communications Manufacturing companies provide several additiona l security and customer services featu r es available for use at shelters. Daytech Manufacturing, Ltd. l ists the following which correspond with Figure 2: emergency button (1 }-In case of danger or an emergency, passenger presses a button and a security/surveillance camera is activated to gauge if the situation is r eal or a prank; vibration/impact sensor (2}-in case of vandalism, a camera is activated by the vibration to gauge the situation; surveillance inside shelter ( 3}-camera can be activated by a monitoring station to determine the s i tuation inside the shelter; 47


MfeT fOY Vl!llleralJle L,l

MfeY fOY V JlSWl>ICYS ... . Consideration must be given to the fact that despite the obvious benefits of the latest technologies, at th is point industry-wide implementation of all of the available products or services is neither desirable nor feasible. The technological needs and capabilities of each transit system are varied and dynamic, and appropriate decisions must be made on an individual basis. It is noteworthy, however, that the various available features of most techno log ies can be tailored to meet client needs and budgets. In addition to shelters and schedule/wait time information, l ighting is frequently cited as an important attribute In the safety and security of bus stops. As discussed in the previous section, most authors recommend the placement of bus stops near existing streetlights to maximize both passenger safety and the cost effectiveness of providing lighting at a stop. When this is not possible, many advocate the consideration of some type of lighting at more remote stops, which is often prohibitive due to power access and cost. Solar-powered light ing offers an environmentally-friendly and potentially cost effective means of providing light at stops in dark areas, without the need to access electrical power. Omnilight, marketed by Solar Outdoor Lighting, Inc ., is a stand-alone, solar-powered light designed specifically to enhance safety and security at bus stops by providing light where electricity is not available or would be proh i bitively expensive. Waiting passengers activate the light by pushing an illuminated button. The ligh t stays on for 15 minutes, and can be reactivated by the passenger if necessary. The panel converts ultraviolet rays into electrical energy which is stored in a battery. Although adequate ultraviolet light is absorbed on cloudy days, a battery that can provide up to seven days of backup was also developed. Omnilight and other solar-powered lighting systems may provide customers more safety and security at the stop, and can also assist the bus driver in seeing that there is a waiting passenger at a stop. In addition to those improvements realized through lighting, shelters, and better information, technologies are being developed that specifically address the needs of certain groups of vulnerable customers Dejeammes et a/. {1999) contend that bus stop design and low-floor bus equipment must be considered 49


Safer Stops tor Vull1el'able Custotl1el's jointly if im proveme nts are to be made to the horizontal and vertical gaps between curbs and bus floors, thereby accommodating better those passengers with reduced mobility. Within this group the authors include older people, those who have difficulty walking, parents with children in strollers, and those who use wheelchairs. The authors assessed the operating conditions of accessibility equipment on buses and drivers' capability in docking at bus stops i n Grenoble, France. Based on the results of thei r investigation two prototype systems were developed and evaluated in an attempt to address the problems with curb and bus gaps-the GIBUS docking aid device and t he VIStE guiding system The GIBUS docking system is an electronic device that displays to the driver the position of the bus in relation to the curb. It consists of an ultrasonic telemeter to measures distances and is locate d under the body of the bus behind the front wheel; a microprocessor which could eventually be connected to the management control system; and an LED visual display that l igh ts up progressively as the distance between the bus and the curb decreases. The VI SEE guiding system is a b it more complex. Th is system guides the bus on a predefined trajectory, limiting uncertainties related to driving. It is based upon image processing and can detect '1he position of the bus in the traffic l ane relative to the horizontal beaconing of the car riageway (straight or broken lines) by means of an onboard video camera (89). Using this data, the processor can calculate the ideal path of the bus, and using an electric motor it acts upon the steering system. It does not, however, take over for the driver as it is merely a device for assistance. Dejeammes et a/. conclude that the GIBUS device allowed drivers to reach the target gap distance of just less than four inches. The authors contend the GIBUS would be an effective tool for training drivers in docking. The VIStE system provided the expected performance for both the gap between curb and bus as well as for the driver's workload, all with a high leve l of safety. The authors state that although the VISEE system would certainly be more expensive than the GIBUS, it provides better performance with low discrepancy and a lower driver workload. 50


Saj'er Stops tor V11l11erable Custmners In addition to address ing issues of physica l mobility techno l ogical advancements have been made i n mak i ng bus stops safe r for those with other forms o f disabil i ties or concerns as well. A c cord i ng to Golle d ge et a/. (1998), the accessibility and safety realized by those transit customers who are b l ind, deve l opmentally i mpaired, foreign language speakers, or reading deficient is great l y enhanced by t h e use of auditory s i gnage. This technology has the capability to p r ovide these populations with transit i nfonnation equ i valent to that of standard signage and printed mater i als Special needs trans i t users can obtain i nformation on stop l ocation, spatial orientation, schedu l es, delays, wait t i mes vehicle identification, and transfer points Golledge et al. list the following types of auditory signage: radio signals or signs that can operate at close or remote l ocations; inductive l oops driven by amplifiers and tape play e rs i nstalled at specific locations; transponders which represent passive signs activated by a code sent to them by a person using a transmitter; Optical Character Readers which can include bot h bar-code readers or readers of standard alpha-numeric code; infrared signage; and, GPS -dri ven Personal Gu i dance Systems. T he autho r s focus on the infrared techno l ogy of Talking Signs as i t and variants of such are the only ones of the above that have been developed for commercial use. The infrared function works similarly to a televisio n remote control. The user hears messages through a hand-h eld receiv e r by the infrared transmission of the speech within the sign Golledge et a/ worked with both legally b l ind and bli ndfo l ded sighted persons in the evaluat i on of Talking S i gns auditory signage as compared to other trave l methods typically used by the blind o r those with some l e vel of vision impairment. The authors found that in open field experiments the participants had difficulty find i ng stanchions and retrac ing l earned routes, even with the use of guide dogs 51


Safer StDps for Vul11erable Customers or echo location. With the use of Talking Signs, however, both groups completed the task in reasonab l e time and error free. In a task to evaluate the selection of the correct bus, blind participants were able to f ind the bus eight out of ten times when not using Talking Signs. With Talking Signs, each part ic ipant from this group was abl e to identify the correct bus. The bl i ndfolded group had slight l y less success, w it h onl y two of nine finding the bus when not using Talking Signs. On the first trial of using Talking Signs this improved to five of nine and in the second trial seven of the nine participants in this group identified the correct bus. Although all participants reached the correct boa rding site using Talking Signs, some of the blindfolded participants did not arrive until the bus had departed The authors conclude that auditory signage is us eful even for inexperienced users in both wayfinding and bus identification. I n general the technology was considered quite favora bly by members of both groups. Participants highly endorsed remote auditory signage for assistance In location direction, orientation, bus identification, and wayfinding. Implementation requ i res the installati o n of two Talking S ign s on each bus, which the authors estimate to cost approximate l y $2000 per bus. They caution, however, that this is but one aspect of such an undertaking as Talking Signs would also need to be installed at many bus stops and shelters a l ong transit routes. Golledge el a/. contend that imp rovements in the quality of life for the many people who need such devices more than accounts for what may be perceived as i nconven ie nt or costly. Increased independence and the reduction of stress, anxiety, fear, and uncertainty in travel are considered to be at such a substantial lev el that the technology is regarded as "extremely worthwhile. Blind Signs, Inc. has d evel oped a far more low-te ch device to assist the visually impair ed in orientat i on and mobility. Blind Signs is a Detectable Directional Guidance System (DOGS) that uses a standardized system of raised markers that can be detected by caning or walking, but that do not interfere with other mobility devices such as wheelcha i rs or walkers. The markers can be mounted to any surface and form to any contour. Each configuration is approximately two feet by two feet in size. 52


Safer Stops tor Vutmrable Customers The system is designed to be a standardized means of providing warnings and directional indicators to those who are blind or have some form of visual impairment. A marker consist ing of three yellow strips signifies a bus or other transit stop (Figure 3). This marker notifies the user that he or she is at the stop as well as where to board the vehicle because the marker may also serve as an indicator to the driver of th e targeted stopping point (Figu re 4). A marker with four red strips alerts users they are about to enter a crosswa lk. The strips are configured so that the pedestrian i s provided directional guidance and i s led into the center of the crosswalk (Figure 5). Five red strips convey a sta irwa y leading up or down. Like the marker with four strips, this marker serves as a detectable warning and provides directional guidance. Thus far the Blind Signs system has been implemented in Eugene and Corvallis, Oregon, and the State of Oregon Disabilities Commission Access Committee has recommended installation of the syst em throughout the state to test its effectiveness. Figure 3: Three Yellow Blind Sig n Strips Denoting a Bus Stop (Blind Sings, Inc. website) 53


Saler Sto!JS tor Vulnerable Customers Figure 4: Three Yellow Blind S i gn Strips I ndicati ng Where to Board the Bus (Blind Signs, Inc. website) Figure 5: Four Red Bli nd Sign Strips Indicating Crosswalk and D i rection (Blind Signs, Inc. website) 54


Sater Stot!S tor Vulnerable Custo11ters This discussio n of the technologies available in making bus stops safer and more secure Is certainly not comprehensive. Technology advances at a rapid pace and the scope of this project does not permit an exha u st i ve study of the variety of products and services that are now available to transi t agencies. Appendix C presents a brief l i sting of those vendors d i scussed here as well as othe r s, including their website addresses This l i st i n g is by no means comprehensive nor does i t serve as an endorsement or recommendat i on of any particular product or company As good business practice, each vendor will make its product as attractive as possible and caution must be used in the evaluation and implementation of products and services As previously stated the necessi t y and feasibility of t h e myriad of technica l products available is an agency dec i sion 55


Sater Stops tor Vulnerable Cl!Sto111ers Conclusion A safe and secure experience at the bus stop is a fundamental expectation and right of a l l transit patrons. Certain populations such as women, children, senior citizens, and the disabled often have concerns that are separate from or in addition to those of the general transit-using public. These groups are often more vulnerable to problems during the trip to the bus stop as well as thei r wait time upon arriving. Women are generally more fearful of the crime potential in dark i solated areas or harassment i n crowded situat i ons. Such concerns for their own security typically extend to their chi l dren as well Furthermore, mobility may be reduced for those women with small children and/or strollers, who are also loading packages Senior citizens tend to have similar consternation regarding persona l security, which is often coup led with mobility issues. For those patrons with physical disab i lities or limitations, access to and from the bus stop and the deployment of vehicle lifts are essential factors. Regardless of the particular issue or its associated group, the safety and security of the bus stop may affect the decision or the ability to utilize transit. With each of these populations comprising a major market within the transit industry, the significance of safe and secure bus stops is clear In general, transit customers have less confident feelings related to their safety and security at bus stops than they do while actually on the transit vehicle. Understanding the needs and perceptions of transit customers is particularly important in creating safer and more secure environments for those populations that may be more vulnerable in terms of their concern or their actual safety and security. This review of the literature has found there to be several r ecurrent passenger concerns r elated to safety and security at bus stops, which include: shelters; benches; lighting; location; 56 I l l


Safer Swps for Vulnerable C11sUJmers the surrounding environment; design; maintenance and cleanliness of the stop; the number and type of people waiting or passing by the stop; wait times; access to and from the stop ; and, monitoring of the stop. As presented within this synthesis, various improvement strategies and technological innovations have been developed to address these issues and enhance the safety and security of bus stops for vulnerable customers as well as all transit passengers. The following are those enhancements or recommendations most often cited as having potential in creating safer and more secure bus stops: increased or improve d lighting in darker areas; analysis of bus stop crime data; collaborate monitoring efforts with police; installation of pay telephones restricted to outbound calls or emergencyuse telephones; adequate signage; video surveillance; more frequent service to reduce wait times; relocate stops away from high crime areas or negative land uses; clear shelters with unobstructed views in and out; place benches and shelters an adequate distance away from vehicular traffic on non-slip, properly drained concrete; locate stops near pedestrian crosswalks and curb ramps; CPTED; locate stops near existing lan d uses; shelter materials should be resistant to the elements and vandalism; adherence to ADA guidelines regarding wheelchair accessibility; and, periodic evaluation of stops. 57


Slifer SWIIS tor VlllnertU>te Customers Several techno l ogica l approaches to enhancing the safety and security at bus stops were also reviewed. These include: real -time arrival information; smart shelters; solar-powered lighting; docking aid devices; guiding systems; auditory signage; dire ctiona l guidance systems; As with many applied pursuits, a collab orative approach to the i mprovement of bus stop safety and security may hold great potential in creating a more positive transit environment. Community involvement is increasingly recognized as a critical component of public planning, and it is now standard practice in transit planning. The vulnerable populations discussed in this do cument are frequent customers for transit agencies, and collaboration with repres entat ive s from these groups is imperative to meeting the needs of these important customers. Without in put from stakeholders within the service community, public transportation cannot be considered truly public. In addition to those populations using and/or paying for their local transit service, other entities such as the police, environmental groups, advertisers, safety advocates, and planners all have something to contribute to the process of transportation planning. Collaboration among the various parties greatly contributes to the creation of a positive transit environment. This concept was substantiated by the FHWA and FTA with the issuance of Public Involvement Techniques for Transportation Decision-Making in 1996. As stated in that report, people must be the focus of transportation systems and services planning. It is critical to consult with those most affected by available transportation services, or the lack thereof. Doing so identifies public values and needs, allows for the exchange of information and fosters consensus building between transportation programs and the communities they serve. Collaboration provides transit agencies the ability to ensure that no neighborhoods or groups 58


Safer Stops for Vulnerable Cu.stomers with special needs are overlooked. The report also notes that the involvement of those who are typically underserved by transportation is critical to supcessful decisions. Ethnic, minority, and low-income populations, and people with disabilities are cited as having lower levels of participation in the planning that is so crucial to their needs. These groups typically have more difficulty than the population at large with regard to accessing jobs, schools, recreation, and shopping. They are often unaware of the collaborative efforts to provide adequate services, and the report addresses various means of involving the public. The many Adopt-A-Stop programs implemented throughout the country are one example of bus stop improvement at the community level, with public participation, and minimal, if any, costs to local transit agencies. Similar to the Adopt-A-Highway programs, volunteers devote a portion of time weekly or as needed, to the maintenance and cleanup of their "adopted" bus stop. In addition to the benefrts of volunteerism and community beautification, some transit agencies provide incentives to volunteers For example, Tri-Met in Portland, Oregon awards ten bus tickets per month to each of its volunteers. This incentive has proven particularly successful among young people, who are frequent transit customers. More than 800 bus stops within Tri-Met's service area have been adopted and l itte r has been reduced by 80 percent through the volunteers' efforts. With one of the concerns related to the safety and security of bus stops being cleanliness, maintenance, and the overall appearance of the stop, such improvements can greatly enhance the perception and the reality of bus stop safety. Furthermore, such efforts contribute to the concept of the "owned" environment, providing a sense of community participation in the upkeep of the transit environment. Many factors affect the safety and security of bus stops, as well as the perception of safety and security, and several strategies and technologies have been developed to address them. It is most desirable to consider those factors affecting bus stop safety and security during the planning stages, while including the public, particularly those populations identified to be more vulnerable in terms 59



Safer Stops for Vllllterable Cl!Stomers References Cited Arlington County Depa rtment of Public Works N .d. Technical Memorandum #1: Development of Bus Stop Design Standards Developed by KFH Group, Bethesda Maryland Bell, Wendy 1998 Women and Community Safety. Paper p resented at the conference Safer Communities: Strategic Directions in Urban Planning, Melbourne Australia, September 10-11,1998. Carter, Amy 2002 GPS Keeps T ransit Agencies on T rack. Metro Magazine, April 2 002. Coughlin, Joseph 2001 Transportation and Older Persons: Perceptions and Preferences. Washington, DC: American Association of Retired Persons Public Policy Institu te. Dejeammes, Maryvonne, Floren! Coffin, Thierry Ladreyt, Marie-France Dessaigne, Valerie Fouet, Claude Dolivet, and Rene Zac 1999 Bus Stop Design and Automated Guidance for Low-Floor Buses: Evaluation of Prototypes with Inves tiga t ion of Human Factors. Transportation Research Record 1666:85-91. Ewing Reid 2000 Asking Transit Users About Transit-Or i ented Design. Transportat ion Research Record 1735:19-24. Federal Highway Administration I Federal Transit Administration 1996 Public Involvement Techniques for Transportation Decision-Making. Prepared by Howard/Stein-Hudson Associates, Inc. and Parso ns Brinckerhoff Quade and Douglas. Golledge, Reginald G., James R. Marston, and C. Michael Costanzo 1998 Assistive Devices and Services for the Disabled: Auditory Signage and the Accessible City for Blind or Vision Impaired Travelers. California PATH Working Paper. Berke ley, CA: California PATH Program, Institute of Transportation Studies. Grand Junction/Mesa County Metropolitan Planning Organization N.d. Transit Design Standards and Guidelines 61


Safer SloflS tor Vll!tterabte Kikuc hi, Sh i nya, Joy Bhattacharya Jennifer Cajthamal, Tatjana Cvetek Daniel Fe i nbl u m, Rache l Kruge r Jonathan McNally, Dragana M il jkovic and Aleksandar Stevanov i c 200 1 Development of Bus Stop Access Improvement Plans: S el ected Bus Stops o n the Kirkwood Highway Corridor. Newark, DE : Delaware Transportation Institute Law, Ph i lip and Brian D. Tay lor 2001 Shelter from the Storm : Optim i z i ng Distribut i on of Bus Stop Shel t ers in Los Ange l es. Transportation Research Record 1753:79 -85. Ligget, Robin, Anasta si a Loukaitou-Sideris and Hiroy u ki lseki 2001 Bus Stop-Envi ronment Con n ect i on: Do Character i stics of the Bui lt Envi r onment Correlate with B u s Stop Crime? Transportation Research Record 1760:20 27. Loukaitou Sideris, Anastas i a 1999 Hot Spots of Bus Stop Crime : The Importance of Environmenta l Attributes. Journa l o f the American P l anning Association, 65(4}:395-411. Loukai touSideris, Anastasia and Robin Liggett 2000 On Bus-Stop Crime. Access, No. 16, Spring. Loukaitou Sideris, Anastasia, Robin Liggett, Hiroyuki lseki, and William Thurlow 2001 Measuring the Effects of Built Environment on Bus Stop Crime. Environment and Planning B : Planning and Design, 28: 255-280. L usk, Anne 2002 Bus and Bus Stop D e s i gns Related to Perceptions of Crime. Springfie l d, VA: Na ti onal Technical i nformat ion Service Needle, Jerome A. and Renee M. Cobb 1997 Improving Transit Security. Synthes i s of Trans i t Pract i ce, Transit Cooperat ive Research Program (21 } Wash i ngton DC : Nat i ona l Aca d emy Press Nsour, Sa l ameh A. 1999 Safety and Secur ity of Transit Serv i ces. P r oceed i ngs: E nhanc i ng Transportation Safety in the 211 Century; ITE I nternational Conference. Reed, T homas B., R i chard R. Wallace, and Danie l Rodriguez 2000 Transit Passenger Perceptions of Transit-Related Crime Reduction Measures Transportation Research Record 1731:130-141. 62


Safer Stops for Vulnerable Customers Reute r Robert C. and Charles V. Zegeer 1998 Transit Stops. In Design and Safety o f Pedestrian Fac il it i es. Pp. 104109 Institute ofTransportation Eng i neers. Ritter, Anita Stowell, Audrey Straight, and Ed Evans 2002 Understanding Senior Transportation: Report and Ana l ysis of a Survey of Consumers Age 50+. Washington, DC: Amer i can Associat i on of Retired Persons Publ i c Policy I nstitute. Stephens, Burton; Charles E. Wallace, Albert Gan, Ana Maria Elias and Atef Ghobrial 1999 Evaluat i on of T r ansportation Safety Needs of Special Po pulations Using Public Transportation: Phase !-Identifying Safety Concerns. Submitted to Southeastern Transportation Center Texas Transportation Institute 1996 Guidelines for the L o cation and Design of Bus Stop s Transportation Cooperative Research Program (19). Washington, DC: National Academy Press. Vogel, Mary and James Pettlnari 2002 Personal Safety and Trans i t: Paths, Environments, Stops and Stations: Final Report. Minneapo l is MN: Center for Transportation Studies. Wallace Richard R., Daniel Rodriguez, Christopher White, and Jonathan Levine 1999 Who Noticed, Who Cares? Passenger Reactions to Transit Safety Measures. Transportation Research Record 1666:133-138. 63


Safer Stop-s tor Vulne r able C u.stomers Append i x A A r lington County Bus Slop Assessment Form 64


Bus Stop ID: ----: page I ARLINGTON BUS STOP ASSESSMENT Date of Assessment.___________________ Time: _______ Weather Conditions _________________ _________________________ Part I. Identification/Location I. Is there a bus shelter? 0 Yes; number: 0 No lfNO, is there an exterior alternative shelter nearby (i.e. -awning, overhangs, underpass)? 0 Yes 0 No 2.StreetName _____________________________________ __ 3. Nearest Cross Street-,---,...,.,,...-,...,..,-,-..,.,-------------------(Street Name or Landmark if mid-block) 4. Bus Route D ir ect ion: 0 North Bound 0 South Bound 0 EastBound O WestBound 5 Where is the bus stop posit io ned i n relation to the nearest intersection? 0 Nearside (Before the bus cross es the intersection) 0 Not near an intersection 0 Far Side (After the bus crosses the inte=tion) 6. Distance from Bus Stop to Curb of Cross Street in feet: __ 7. Adjacent Property Address or name of business----------------------------(Only if readily visible) 8 Adjacent Property Description: 0 Apartment Building 0 Church 0 Day Care 0 Govenunent Building 0 Hoi>'Pital 0 Human Service Agency 0 Industrial Site/Bldg. D Library 0 MallJShopping Center D Nursing Home 0 Office Building OPark D Parking Lot 0 Residence 9. Distance from previous bus stop (in miles) : __ D Residence detached D Reta i l Store D School 0 Supermarket 0 Transit station/center 0 Vacant lot 0 Other ____


Bus Stop ID: ___ page2 Part II. Pedestrian Access Features A. Landing Area Assessment I. Is there a landing area at least 5 feet wide and 8 feet deep adjacent to the curb/street? DYes DNo 2. For ART stops ONLY: Is the landing area a t least 25 feet wide and 8 feet deep? DYes DNo 3. Where is the landing area positioned in relation to the curb/street? D Sidewalk D Shoulder D Curb Bulb DOff-Road/No sidewalk D Other _________ 4. What is the material of the landing area? D Concrete D Gravel D Dirt a Brick Pavers D Asphalt D Grass D Other _____ 5. What the elevation level of the landing area? D At Street Level D On Curb (above street level) 6. A:re there problems with the landing area DYes D No If YES. check all that apply, and rank resulting hazard potential Not pot entially hazardous hazardous definitely hazardous D Uneven D Slopes Up from the Street D Slopes Down from the Street D Requires stepping over catch basin D Other _______ D D 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 D D D D 0 7. Are there any obstacles that woul d limit the mobility of a wheelchair? 0 Yes D No If Yes, describe obstruction:--------------------8. Additional landing area comments:-------------------9. Landing area recommendations: a widen sidewalk to expand landing area to 5x8 a move object to improve accessibility: ----------0 make the following repairs:----..,..,...-------------0 install curb bulb or remove on street parking:--------------a Other :-----------------


Bus Stop ID: ----:: page3 B. Pedestrian Connectio11s I. What are the miman: trip generators for passengers at this stop? (Check all that apply) o Apartments large building/complex o Nursing home/assisted living o Apartments small building o Office Building/employment o T ownhomes o Park and Ride Lot o Church o Recreation Center o Day Care/pre-school o School -High o Government Building o School Middle o Hospitallmajor clinic o Schoo l -Elementary o Human Service Agency what kind? o SchoolCollege/University/Technical school o Library o Senior Center o Major Shoppingiemnloyment (Mall, WaiMart, Kmart, Target, other big department store) o T ra nsfer to other bus rou tes o Tran sit station/center o Other ______________ __ o Neighborhood Shopping (supenuarket, drugs to re, Goodwill, str i p mall with basic needs shopping) :2. How wide is the sidewalk? o no s i dewalk o les s than 3' feet 0 3'-5' o 5' or greater 3. Are there physical barriers that constrict th e width of the sidewalk within the block on whi ch the bus stop is located? o Yes o No 1/YES, what is the narrowest tlseable width: o leS$ than 3' feet o 3' or greater 4. Does the landing pad connect to the sidewalk? 0 Yes 0 No If YES, what does the sidewalk co1mect to: 0 One of the above trip generators 0 The Nearest Intersection 5 Where is the nearest street crossing opporlllnity? D The nearest intersection D Mid-block crosswalk 6. What pedestrian amenities are at the nearest inter sect ion (or other crossing opporlllnity)? o Curb Cuts All Comers/both sides o Visible crosswalk o Curb Cuts At Some Corners/one si d e o Traffic Light o Pedestrian crossing signal o Other: -------------7. Is there a bus stop across the street? DYes ONo 8 Are there connections to other transportation services at this bus stop? (Check all that apply) o Metrorail o Greyhound o Commuter Rail o Other------------


Bus Stop 10: ----.,. page4 9. Additional Ped estrian Connection Comments: ---------------10. Pedestrian connections reconunendations: o construct sidewalk o widen sidewalk o illlprove landing area connecti .ons to sidewalk o in>tall curb cut(s) at: ---::-:7::---------------'-o move object to impro ve a ccess i bility :-------------0 make the following repairs: _________________ o other: ______________ _ Part III. Passenger Comfort Amenities A. Shelter Assessment move to Section B if there is no shelter. 1 What is the orientation of the bus shelter in rela tion to the street? 0 Facing Towards the Street 0 Facing On-Coming Traffic 2. What kind of shelter is it? o Arlington Aluminum -fu ll size o Arl i ngton Aluminum hal f size o WMATA Brown o Other (no11-standard) ---------------3.1fnon-standard shelter, what are the approx. dimensions (width, height and depth i n feet) of the interior standing area ? 0 Width 0 Height 0 Depth. ___ 4. Does the shelter have a front center panel (i.e. two openings)'/ S Could a person in a wheelchair maneuver into t he shelter? 6. Could a person i n a wheelchair fit completely under the shelte r? 7. What is the distance ofthe shelter from the curb in feet? 00-2' 02'-4' 0 4'-6' 06'-8' 8. Are there damages to th e shelter? 0 Yes 0 No If YES, check all that apply: 0 Yes 0 No 0 Yes 0 No 0 Yes 0 No 0 8'10' 0 >10' o Broken Panels o Graffiti o Holes in the Roof o Missing Panels o Needs repainting o Other _______


9. Rank the condition of the she.lter (!=poor, S=excellent). I 1 =hazardous -broken glass unstable 2 =in poor shape though not hazardous 2 Bus Stop ID: ----= page 5 3 4 5 3=fairneeds reJX1inting, glass pcrne4' need thorough cleaning, proJrudtng but not hazardous bolts 4=goodnot peifect but no immediate ropair need 5=cosmetically exc<1/lent; new 10. Additional Shelter Comments:-------------------11. Shel ter recommendations : o remove center panel o move object to improve accessibility:----------------0 make the followingrepairs:_-::-=---------0 move shelter to improve access ibility: ------------oother.. _______________________ ___ B. Seating Assessment I. Is there a bench or other seating? 0 Yes 0 No If YES please complete Section B. If NO pleClSe move to Section C. Trash Assessment 2. What is the tYPe of seating available? 0 Bench inside Shelterskip to question 4. 0 Freestanding Bench 0 Other _ 3. If not inside shelter, what is the distance of the seating from the curb in feet? 0 02' 0 2' 4' 0 4 6' 0 6 8' 0 8'10' 0 >10' 4. Are there problems with the seating? DYes ONo If YES, check a// that apply: 0 B roken Pieces 0 Needs Painting 0 Graffiti 0 Not Securely Installed 0 Other ________ 5. Rank the condition of the seating (l=poor S = excellent). I 2 3 4 5 J = hazardous bro ken, someone could get hurl from nonnal use 2=in poqr $hope thQugh not hazardous 3=/air needs repainting needs cosmetic attention, protnuling but not hazardous bolts tl=goodnot peifect but no immediaJe repoir need 5=c:rumetically excel/en(; new 6. Additional Seating Conunents: -----------------


7. Seating recommendations: Bus Stop ID: page6 o make the following repairs:_-::-::::----------------0 move bench to improve accessibility:-------------0 other:. __________________ C. Trash Assessment LIs there a trash receptacle? 0 Yes 0 No If YES then please answer Section C If NO then please move to Section D. Newspaper Boxes 2 What is the type of installation for tbe trash receptacle? 0 Attached to th e Shelter 0 Free Standing 0 Garbage bag 0 Bolted to Sidewalk 0 Other ___________ 3. Are there problems with the trash receptacle and surrounding area? (Check all that apply) D Trash can very Full 0 Graffiti at Bus Stop 0 Bus Stop Littered 0 Trash Can not Securely Installed D Grocery Carts Left at Stop 0 Adjacent Property Littered D O ther _________ 4 Additional Comments:----------------5. Trash recommendations : o make the following repairs: ::-::::-------0 move trash can to improve accessibility : ------------0 install trash can due to litter problem o other:. __________________ D. Newspaper Boxes I. Are there newspaper boxes near the bus stop? 0 Yes; how many: 0 No If YES please complete Section D If NO please move to Part IV.Safety/Security Features 2 Are the newspaper boxes a barrier to sidewalk usage? 3. Are the newspaper boxes a barrier to bus access/egress? 4. Are they chained to the bus stop pole shelter, or bench? 5. Are they blocking access to posted bus schedule info? 0 Yes 0 Yes DYes DYes ONo O No DNo ONo 6. Additional news p aper box comments :------------------


7 Newspaper box recommendations: Bus Stop ID: ----= page? o move box(es) can to improve accessibility:-------------0 other: ________________ Part IV. Safety/Security Features A. Traffic a11d Pedestria11 Safety Issues 1 Where is the bus stop area located? o In the Tmvel Lane o Bus Lane/Pu ll Off Area o A Paved Shoulder o In rig ht turn only lane o Unpaved Shoulde r o Off Street o "no parking" portion of stree t parking lane o Other----------2. the bus stop :tone designated as a no parking zone? o Yes, indica ted by: o No o one no parking sign o 2 or more no parking signs o painted curb o painted street 3 Are cars parked between the land ing area and the bus stopping area? o Yes o No 4 What is the posted speed limit? 5. \Vhat are the traffic controls at the nearest intersection for the this street? o Tmffic Signals o Flashing Lights o None o Stop / Yield Sign o Other ___________ 6. How many travel lanes go in the d irection of the route? o 1 o2 o3 o4 oOtber __ 7. Is there a shoulder? oYes oNo 8. Is there on-street parking perm itred just before or after the bus stop zone? aYes oNo if YES, length of the "no parking" area: feet 9. Are there potential traffic hazards? o Y es, check all that apply: oNo o The bus stop is just over the crest of a hill o The bus stop is just after a curve in the road a The bus stop is near an at-grade railroad crossing o Waiting passengers are hidden from view of approaching bus o A stopped bus straddles the crosswalk o Bus stop just before crosswalk


Bus Stop ID: ___ ""7 page8 10. Additional traffic safety comments I recommendations: -------B. Lighting A ssessment I. Is there lighting a t the bus stop? 0 Street Light 0 Yes, indicate type below 0 Shel ter L i ghting DNo 0 Outside Light on Adjacent Building 0 Other _ _ 2. Additional Comments:----------------------C. Pay Plumes I Is there a pay phone within the immediate vicinity? DYes ONo 2. Additional Comments:-------------------D Lanascaping Assessment I. Are there prob lems w ith the landscaping around the bus stop? 0 Yes, check all that apply 0 No o Trees/Bushe s encroaching on the landing area o Trees/Bushes encroaching on the sidewalk o Tree branches that would hit the bus o Other __________________ 2 Addit ional Comments:------------------Safety Recommendati ons: o improve pedestrian safety by:---------------0 move bus stop to:,------------0 trim trees or branches:----------0 other:---------------------


V. Info rm a tion F e atu res there a bus stop sign? D Yes D No If YES please answ er que s tions I -5. If NO please move to question 6 2 What prov id er name is on the b u s s top? 0 WMATAMctrobus 0 Arlington ART 0 On a Building Bus Stop ID: ----;: page9 0 Other ____ 0 On a Ut i lity Po l e 3. How is the sign inst all e d ? 0 On its own Pole 0 On a Shelter 0 Other ________ 4. Are bus routes indicated on the bus s t op s ign? 0 Yes 0 No I f yes, what r o utes? -------------5. Are t here problems with tb.e signage? 0 Yes If YES. Check all that apply o Sign in Poor C o ndition o Sign Posi tion H azardous t o Ped estrians o Sign not Perman e ntly Moun t ed 6. I s there r oute/schedu l e infonnation p osted? If YES please an s wer question 7. If N O please move to question 8. 7 Where is the ro u te/schedu le information posted? o On Pole under b u s stop sign ONo o Pole in P oo r Condi tio n o Other __________ D Yes DNo o On i t s own Pol e o On a Building o On a U t ility Po l e o On a She l ter o Other _________ 8. Is there an information case? D Yes DNo If YES. Check type 0 round Arlington 0 o ther : ______ D square WlVIA TA Are repairs needed? o no o yes:--------9. Addi tional signage & informa tio n comments: 10. Signage & infonnation recomme ndations: o make the foll owing repairs:-------------0 other: _________________


VI. Dia gra matic Sketch Bus Stop ID: ------,"7 page 1 0 Choose the most appropriate diagram of the intersectio n and sketch the layout of the bus stop area and any traffic controls. On sketch, be sure to note locations of: 0 bus stop sign pole 0 other poles 0 landing pad 0 shelter 0 bench 0 trash can 0 newspaper boxes 0 anything else installed at bus stop 0 sidewalks 0 sidewa l k barriers 0 crosswalks 0 curb cuts 0 traffic s ign alslstops s igns 0 railroad tracks 0 bus stop across the street 0 north/south/east/west


fOY VWII1CYQOle <.;UStol11ers Appendix B Delaware Department of Transportation Bus Stop and Passenger Facilities Policy 75


Excerpt From Bus Stop and Passenger Facilities Policy C. Bus Stop Design 1. Location Delaware Department of Transportation Consistent with t he flow of traffic, bus stops may be placed i n thre e basic configurations: Far-side curb (placed immediately after an intersectio n ) Near-side curb (placed immediately before an intersection) Mid-block curb (placed between intersections or along the side of a stretch of roadway) DTC will endeavor to place all bus stops at far-side locations provided they are safe within the immediate adjacent environment. Appendix A provides descriptions and schematics of these configurations. 2. Pedestrian Access Bus stop placement must have safe pedestrian access to and from the stop. Newly constructed bus stops must fulfill the federal requirem ents of 49 CFR Part 37, Appendix A to comply with the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) and the Architectural Accessibility Board (AAB) standards for people with disabilities (See Appendix B. Figure B-1; State of Delaware Architectural Accessibility Board Standards; and CABO/ANSI Al17. 1-1992). The accessible path to the bus stop should be well-drained and, when possible, placed where there are existing street lights to provide lighting and security for passengers. The accessible pathway to the bus stop ideally has the following characteristics : Clear width of no less than 36", preferably 60" (the minimum width needed to allow passage of two wheelchairs simultaneously) Running slope of the pathway can be no greater than I :.12 (rise/run) per ADA and AAB standards The surface of the pathway must be firm and well drained The path must have ADA and AAB compliant curb cuts at all street intersections DTC does not itself provide physical improvements outside the immediate environment of the bus stop. It will work with appropriate organizations to ensure


that the provision of suitable sidewalks is included in roadway improvement or la,nd development projects to enhance pedestrian accessibility. D. Passenger Facilities The comfort, co.nvenience, and safety of the bus stop and its approaches are key factors in attracting and retaining transit riders. Passenger facilities that are provided at each stop will be based primarily on hoardings at the respective stop, as depicted in Appendix G, although special needs or circumstances may be considered. Special consideration will be given to stops that serve multiple routes and experience significant numbers of transfers. In areas served by transit, passenger facilities will be included on highway expansio n or reconstruction projects at key locati ons as a means of generating new ridership During the design of the project, DTC, Preconstruction; and Planning will confer and jointly identify those stop locations having the greatest potential for expanding ridership. Passenger facilities wilJ be provided at those identified stops when the highway is being improved. It should be noted that physical constraints, property restrictions, and the needs of vehicle or pedestrian traffic may limit DTC's ability to install the usual facilities at some locations. I. Signing Bus stops are identified by a standard DTC bus stop. Specifications for bus stop signs and instalJation of same are shown in Appendix C. A number of jurisdictions within the State specify and provide th eir own signs; in these cases DTC will work with the appropriate officials to ensure that stops are properly signed. Signs for DTC recognized public transit services may be placed on the same post, below the DTC sign (example: U nicity in Newark). On roads or streets where parking is permitted, bus stops should be designated "No Stopping, Standing, or Parking" zones with appropriate signing. 2. Customer Information Information boards depicting routes and schedules of routes serving a stop will be provided at 111ajor stops, generally those with shelters or benches and all park and ride locations. System maps or schematics depicting the routes and available connections from the stop and other transit-related information or promotional materials may also be provided. Informational materials wiiJ be updated at each schedule change or as required. As advanced customer information systems become available, they will be deployed at major stops or where they can be most useful to customers. 3. Paved Passenger Waiting Areas


All bus stops should have a paved waiting area for the safety an d comfo rt of custo mers. This may be a pre-existing sidewalk or paved ro ad way sho u l der. There sho ul d be a cl e ar width of not l e ss than 60" to acconunodate th e turnin g rad ius of a w heelchair ont o a w heelchair lift platform. Al ternatively, DTC may constru c t concrete pads measu ring a t least 8;8 feet for bu s stops t h at have co n sistent dail y ridersh i p DTC will w ork with other De!DOT div isions and munic i pal i t i es to inco rporate constru ction of bus s top pads and/or sidewalks as appropriate in t o high way co nstruction projects, and w ith pri v ate deve l opers t o in clude them in new construction. If a new pad is cons tru c ted, either publicly o r p rivate ly, it must meet ADA and Architectural Accessibility Board Standards (see Appendix B, Figure B-1; State ofD elaware Architectural Accessibility Standards; and CABO /ANSI All7.1-1992). As ridership gr ows, there will be a need to ins tall she l ters, bicycl e rac ks, or other im provements at stops. Where possible, D T C will seek to reserve space for s u ch future improvemen t s includi ng gradi n g land b eyond t hat require d for the initia l p ad installation. DT C Service Developmen t w ill work with rel e vant DeJDOT office s municip al governments, an d property o wners t o ensur e that suc h space is kept clear o f fixed structures, u tility po l es, lines, d itches, and similar obs tru ctions. Approp ri ate easements will be obtain ed for each stop location. 4. B en ches a Benches are a low-cos t fa cili ty to enhance the comfort of passengers at bu s stops. Location criteria for install ation of benc hes are as follows: High T ransit Dens ity 2 0 or more hoardings p er d a y Mode rate T r an sit Densi ty 1 0 or m ore boardillll:s oer day Low Transi t Densi ty 5 o r more ho ardings per day B enches m ay also be installed in such as the following: Available space at the bus s t op l ocation will not perinit installation of a shelter Landowner has denied the instal l ation of a s h elter R o utes se rving the st op have lon g interva l s be tw een bu ses B us s t ops used by signific ant numbers of e l derly or disabled perso ns Problems are experienced with passengers sitting on curbs, s t eps, structures or other facilities not associated with the bus stop b. The placem ent of b e n c hes should be in th e vicinity of s hade tre es o r benefit from exi s t i n g overhead sh e l t ering wher e poss ible Benches should be placed near e x i sting s treetlights, on a n o n-sl ip, properly drained


surface, either on a sidewalk or a concrete pad within the right-of-way. On streets with high speeds or high volumes of traffic, the bench should be at least 8' behind the curb to ensure waiting passenger safety and comfort. The bench should be placed clear of pedestrian pathways and boarding areas, including boarding areas for wheelchair users. The bench should be constructed of vandal-proof and weather resistant material. 5. Passenger Shelters a. DTC's decision to install a shelter is guided primarily by the number of passenger hoardings per day, as follows: High Transit Density 40 or more hoardings per day Moderate Transit Density 20 or more hoardings per day Low Transit Density I 0 or more hoardings per day Additional considerations to evaluate the decision to ins tall a shelter include: The number of passenger transfers at a stop The amount and frequency of bus service at a stop The number of elderly or people with disabilities utilizing the stop Proximity to major employment activity, or commercial centers The availability of space to construct the shelter Ability to l ocate the shelter without causing a visibility hazard to traffic b. Shelters will be of a standardized modular design to enlargement by adding modules, (see AppendbcB for specific shelter dimensions and standards) and will be constructed of anodized aluminum frames and tempered glass or polycarbonate glazing. Components wi ll be interchangeable for replacement i n case ofdamage or van.dalism. Shelters will be at least 5' deep and generally 15' wide. Ten feet, twenty-five feet, or other sized shelters will be used when appropriate, based on space constraints and passenger demand. Shelters will be equipped with a bench in the rear across all but one frame or approximately 5' to leave room for wheelchairs and general accessibility. In some cases municipalities or businesses may desire to have custom designed shelters to conform to historical or architectural themes. If the location warrants a shelter, DTC may enter into a partnership arrangement under which the requesting entity will fund any and all costs beyond those


of procurement and installation of a standard DTC shelter. If a location does not warrant a shelter, the municipality or business will be responsible for the entire cost and for all maintenance beyond routine cleaning. Failure to adequately maintain the shelter may result in discontinuation of service In all cases, the design must be approved by DTC Facilities and Safety Sections and must comply with the ADA and o)her legal requirements. Cantilevered shelters, without side panels or supports, may be used in locations where a standard shelter would block sidewalks or pedestrian pathways. Shelters will be cleaned and trash receptacles emptied on a weekly basis or more frequently as determined by DTC. DTC will make every reasonable effort to maintain shelters in satisfactory condition However, it reserves the right to remove panels without replacement or to remove shelters entirely where repeated instances of vandalism or other damage or defacement occurs. c. Shelter placement guidelines are as follows:. Shelters should be placed parallel to the existing outer curb or edge of paved roadway in a concrete pad or paved area (may include sidewalk where present) at least 2' wider than the size shelter planned for installation There must be a clear space of a minimum of 8' from the curb either in front of or adjacent to the shelter to meet ADA and Architectural Accessibility Board requirements The concrete pad must be a minimum of 8" thick between the shelter supports and 4" elsewhere The shelter can be oriented to face away from the street to protect waiting passengers from snow buildup, splashing water or wind Placing bus stop shelters in front of store windows or businesses should be avoided Shelters placed directly adjacent to a building must have a 12" clear space between the shelter and the building to permit trash removal and cleaning of the shelter Service Development will prepare shelter placement site plans, then review them with Facilities and Safety, and submit them to the local governmental jurisdicti on, as required, for approval The shelter placement wiJI be within the existing right-of-way or an approved area by the owner if placed on private property


d. DTC reserves the right to remove shelters where repeated instances of vandalism or other damage ordefacement occur. 6 Privately Provided Shelters Businesses, developers; community organizations, or other private parties may pay for and install s h elters on bus routes that serve specific developments, neighborhoods, shopping malls o r employment or activity centers. The design elements of a privately provided shelter need to meet DTC ADA, and Architectural Accessibility Board guidelines. All designs must be compatible with customer needs and operational safety considerations. Prior to installation, an agreement on ownership and maintenance must be signed between D T C and the private provider. DTC must provide fmal approval on the design configurations for these facilities. Privately provided shelters may consist of a thematic or artistic design that i s compatible with the major design features of the surrounding buildings or neighborhoods as long as essential security, safety, and accessibility criteria are met. The ag e ncy providing the shelter may be recognized with a small plaque or sign. DTC reserves the right to discontinue service if the shelter or its maintenance fail to comply with these requirements 7. Trash Receptacles Trash receptacles typically are provided at bus stops with shelters or benches, high volume stops, major transfer points, and specific sites where littering on site at a bus stop is identified as a problem Trash receptacles must be placed where they will not obstruct passengers boarding or alighting from the bus, deployment of wheelchair lifts, or pedestrian traffic on the sidewalk. T rash receptacles will be emptied and cleaned on a week l y basis or more frequently if required. 8. Lighting It is highly desirable to place all bus stop signs, shelters, and benches in areas where lighting is or can be provided Th e lighting of bus stops offers the following advantages: Safety and security, both real and perceived, of waiting transit passengers; Ability of bus drivers to clearly see the bus stop area and passengers. Where lighting is not available, DTC may coordinate with local to provide it for bus stop areas having night service, high ridership, or signi ficant numbers of transfers. Interior lighting should be provided for shelters, although it is recognized that maintenance and utilities become an ongoing operational expense. Solar-powered overhead lighting systems may be used to minimize utility costs, both at installation and throughout the life of the shelter. Lighting fixtures will be modular to facilitate installatio n replacement, or removal. DTC reserves the right to remove lighting fixtures where repeated instances of vandalism or other


damage or defacement occur. 9. Additional Convenience Facilities Additional convenience facilities may be installed at highly utilized transit stops, in particular where shelters exist. This is done to increase the attractiveness and customer friendly environment of bus stops and Park and Ride lots. DTC will coordinate the installation of such facilities but does not assume any liability associated with their presence or use Facilities to be considered will include: Payphones Newspaper boxes Public telephones will be placed at aU park and ride locations and at major bus stops. The installation should adhere to ADA accessibility guidelines and not obstruct pedestrian circulation. Telephones may be limited to outgoing calls only outside ofDTC's normal operating hours at the location. Phones provide passengers convenience io make personal or emergency calls and to have access to transit infoimation. The installation of vending machines and newspaper boxes wilt be the responsibility of private vendors. Where bus stops are located within De!DOT right-of-way, DTC will require that boxes be secured to reduce vandalism and be placed in a location that does not interfere with pedestrian traffic or wheelchair access to the shelter 10. Bicycle Storage Facilities As part of its conunitment to provide a range of multi-modal transportation choices to transit customers, DTC will provide bicycle storage facilities at high volume, park and ride lots or in other appropriate locations statewide Identification of specific sites will be based on bicycle plans developed by the Department of Transportation, local transportation planning agencies, and cycling advocacy groups DTC will also consider installing bicycle facilities where requested by potential users. Bicycle facilities add significantly to the right-of way and paved area required for a bus stop, so their installation must be based on a clearly identified demand. Bike and ride locationS must be served by safe bicycle access routes : Due to the escalating cost ofbicycles and the high incidence of vandalism to bikes left on bike racks, bicycle lockers will be provided at sites where customer demand and the local bicycle circulation network warrant. Lockers may be rented from DTC; applicants are given a key to the locker. Back to Top


Safer SWpS fOr VUlnerable Customers Appe ndix C Vendor Listings 83


Safer StoJ'S for Vulnerable Clt.sto111ers i .., = .... ;c;s;, Oil 1 ii *>l't otvi4 8 IC QH .. W:iil'4f h;qi &&iii i 1 '1"#* !CWUQ Real-Time lnfonnation Systems NextBus Information Systems. Inc. http://www.nextj:>us.coml I nova Corporation http://www inovatransit.comlindex.htm Orbital Sc i ences Corporation http://www.orbital.comfTMS/PublicTransiVIndex.html CleverDevices Ltd. http : //www.cleverdevices com/ Adaptive Micro System, Inc. http://www.adapt i i on htm Shel ters Daytech Manufacturing, Ltd. Tolar Manufacturing Company http : //www3.thomasregister.comlolc/tolarmfg/ Handi Hut, Inc http://www. Brasco International, Inc. Columbia Equipment Company Inc. http:/ l umbiaeguipment.coml 84 =


sater SW,JS tor Vltltterable Clfstomers Solar-Powered Lighting Solar Outdoor Lighti ng I nc. http:llwww so l arf ighting com/index. html Carmanah Techno lo gies, Inc. Design Dimensions http://www Startronics Sola r Lighting http:llwww.startronics-solar com/index htm Auditory Slgnage and Directional Systems Talking Signs, Inc. http://www. talkingsigns. com/ Blind Signs, Inc. Digita l Recorders, Inc. http :/lwww html 85 i I I


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