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Pedestrian Access to Transit 61 Exhibit 7-1. Example of a traffic signal on a pedestrian route connecting BRT and heavy rail stations (North Hollywood Station, Los Angeles). Source: Kittelson & Associates, Inc. The following issues are therefore essential to consider when designing pedestrian access to a station: · Directness and speed of route. Pedestrians want direct walking routes, with minimum delays when crossing streets. · Safety and security. Pedestrians need to perceive that their route is secure and visible to other road users, particularly in the evening. Highway safety is also important, particularly when crossing busy roadways (Exhibit 7-1). Overall roadway design issues are discussed in the chapter on automobile access. · Pedestrian-friendly design. Lighting, building setbacks and orientations, and sidewalks are important determinants of whether a pedestrian feels like an "unwelcome guest" or perceives that the street is designed to meet their needs. They should be designed at a "human scale." · Information. New, occasional and visiting travelers particularly need wayfinding information to reach local destinations (34). Design Principles There are two primary components of pedestrian station access: (1) station approaches and areas adjacent to stations and (2) station entrances and platforms. The latter is primarily outside of the scope of this research effort, and is covered extensively in other guidance documents. For example, Part 7 of TCRP Report 100: Transit Capacity and Quality of Service Manual, 2nd Edition provides detailed information on pedestrian level of service and circulation on walkways, stairways, queuing areas, and other station elements. TCRP Report 69: Light Rail Service: Pedestrian and Vehicular Safety provides information on incorporating pedestrian safety into light rail station design, including appropriate pedestrian control devices and rail crossing treatments. In addition, numerous transit agencies have station design guidelines or criteria covering pedestrian circulation, safety, and queuing within stations. ADA standards also play a major role in transit station design.
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62 Guidelines for Providing Access to Public Transportation Stations The remainder of this chapter focuses on pedestrian access beyond the station entrance. Note that the following guidelines serve only as general principles; detailed design guidance for pedes- trian facilities are available from a variety of sources (e.g., TCRP, US Access Board, AASHTO, NCHRP, state departments of transportation, and transit agencies). The guidance is based on the researchers' observations, as well as a synthesis of guidance from the access guidelines for BART, WMATA, and Denver RTD. Design Pedestrian Routes Within the Station to Be Direct and to Minimize Conflicts · Minimize walking distances, while ensuring that sufficient circulation space is provided. People always seek the shortest walking route to their destination; station design should recognize this. The Transit Capacity and Quality of Service Manual provides detailed procedures for calculating the pedestrian capacity and level of service of walkways based on actual or anticipated pedestrian demand. · Provide sufficient space through waiting areas (e.g., feeder bus stops) to safely accommodate demand for both waiting passengers and through pedestrians. · Minimize elevation changes or avoid them altogether wherever possible. Where necessary, ramps, small inclines, escalators, or elevators should be provided instead of, or in addition to, steps (Exhibit 7-2). · Keep pedestrian routes clear of structural elements such as pillars, to increase accessibility, ease circulation, and maintain visibility and security. All routes should meet ADA requirements for accessibility. · Locate information points, such as real-time information displays, in locations that avoid impeding pedestrian flows. Adequate space should be provided to allow customers to stand out of travelways while reading displays. The bottom of a stairway, for example, is an inappropriate location. · Wherever possible, provide multiple access routes to increase accessibility from all directions and to help distribute the flow of people during peak travel periods. · Introduce traffic calming measures as necessary to control vehicle speeds in the station area. · Design pedestrian routes to meet accessibility standards for people with disabilities. Exhibit 7-2. Pedestrian ramp providing station access (County Line RTD Station, Englewood, CO). Source: Kittelson & Associates, Inc.
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Pedestrian Access to Transit 63 · Create visible pedestrian pathways through parking facilities delineated by sidewalks or surface markings. · Design pedestrian waiting areas with enough space to accommodate passengers waiting to be picked up, with lighting, seating, and weather protection. It may be possible to combine transit and drop-off waiting areas, providing that automobiles do not delay transit vehicles. Create a Strong Sense of Security for Customers · Ensure that station agents and other staff have a highly visible presence. If station agents are present, their post should be able to view all entrance points and circulation areas. The prominent use of closed circuit television (CCTV) should be considered where this is not possible. · Avoid blind corners, alcoves, and other secluded locations. · Ensure that shrubbery or other pedestrian enhancements do not block visibility of pedestrians or create hidden areas that create a security risk. Passengers Should Be Able to Orient Themselves Quickly and Easily · Minimize the need for wayfinding through direct line-of-sight connections along pedestrian desire lines where possible, particularly to bus stops, connecting rail platforms, and parking areas. · Avoid changes in direction and blind corners, which can disorient customers. · Where line-of-sight connections are not possible, provide wayfinding within stations, particularly to parking areas, bus and rail transfer points, and key local destinations. · Wayfinding should be consistent across stations. Typefaces and symbols should be legible and signs should not be obscured by other signs or equipment. · Prominently display maps in each station to enable customers to locate destinations. Maps should include station plans, locations of parking, transit connections, bicycle racks, the local street network, and key nearby destinations (Exhibit 7-3). · Design the station to be as visible as possible from the surrounding area. Where stations are incorporated into other built structures, they should have a distinctive street presence. Exhibit 7-3. Local area map within station (Oakland, CA). Source: Kittelson & Associates, Inc.
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64 Guidelines for Providing Access to Public Transportation Stations Create a Network of Safe, Direct, and Appealing Walking Routes to the Station · Allow pedestrians to exit directly onto the street sidewalk without passing through a parking area or bus transit center. Where this is not possible, pedestrian routes and crossing points should be clearly marked and as direct as possible (see Exhibit 7-4). · Use a variety of design treatments to ensure safe and comfortable pedestrian crossings of roads and driveways in the station area. These can include marked crosswalks, traffic signals, median islands, and curb bulb-outs (see Exhibit 7-5). There are a wide variety of sources available to assist in the planning and design of safe and effective pedestrian crossing improvements. These include the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices and TCRP Report 112: Improving Pedestrian Safety at Unsignalized Crossings. · Do not compromise pedestrian safety to accommodate greater auto volumes. Double right-turn lanes and free right-turn lanes should be avoided throughout the station area and particularly along primary pedestrian routes. · Incorporate pedestrian-friendly design and operations into the traffic signals in the vicinity of the station (e.g., pedestrian signal-heads with countdown timers, adequate pedestrian clearance time, and well-marked crosswalks). As appropriate, additional improvements such as leading pedestrian intervals, curb extensions, and exclusive pedestrian phases should be considered. Exhibit 7-4. Example of a pedestrian route through a station parking area (Sound Transit Tukwila Light Rail Station, WA). Source: Kittelson & Associates, Inc.
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Pedestrian Access to Transit 65 Exhibit 7-5. Rapid-flash beacons at pedestrian crossing treatment leading to station entrance (Metropark, NJ). Source: Kittelson & Associates, Inc. · Provide lighting at a pedestrian scale, with particular attention paid to locations with potential vehiclepedestrian conflicts. · Provide trees, wider sidewalks, and seating and other street furniture to make routes more appealing to pedestrians. Shade or shelter from wind may be a priority in different neighbor- hoods, depending on prevailing climate. The Highway Capacity Manual 2010 procedures for calculating pedestrian level of service (described in detail in Appendix B: Evaluation Tools) can be used to evaluate the quality of both existing routes and potential improvements.