The City of West Hollywood has installed two prototype “Smart” bus shelters/stops on Santa Monica Boulevard. Following a period of testing and refinement of the two prototypes, a citywide rollout of the new bus shelters/stops is anticipated throughout 2019 and early 2020.
These prototypes are part of the city’s WeHo Smart City Initiative, which works to weave technology into the fabric of the city to improve the quality of life, health and safety of residents. The Smart City Strategic Plan addresses local and regional urban challenges with a focus on five core subject areas: Sustainability, Mobility, Accessibility, Resiliency, and Transparency (SMART).
The Smart Bus Shelter prototype features a large shade canopy, integrated seating with enhanced armrests, and vibrant digital and print advertising and public service announcement panels. The shelter incorporates an ADA wheelchair zone and its ambient ceiling lighting was designed to look as if standing underneath a leafy tree canopy. It is located on the north side of Santa Monica Boulevard, just west of North San Vicente Boulevard.
The Smart Bus Stop prototype accommodates existing trees and space constraints in the public right-of-way where a bus shelter cannot fit. The prototype features a freestanding feature-rich bus stop kiosk and adjacent ergonomic wood bench seating with armrests. It is located on the north side of Santa Monica Boulevard, just west of North Sweetzer Avenue, across from West Hollywood City Hall.
Both prototypes feature innovative interactive features such as:
· Visual real-time bus arrival information on a digital text screen;
· Audio real-time bus arrival information operated by push button aimed at assisting people with vision impairment;
· Bus stop street name with six-inch letter height;
· USB charging ports;
· Wi-Fi; and
· Energy-efficient LED edge lighting.
In its announcement of the installations, the city notes that “Bus shelters/stops are increasingly recognized in cities large and small as essential ingredients for successful mobility and place-making — a multi-faceted approach to the planning, design, and management of public spaces, which builds upon a community’s assets, inspiration, and potential to create public spaces that promote people’s well-being. With advances in technology, Smart bus shelters/stops offer enhanced features for pedestrians and transit users, alike.
“The City of West Hollywood’s Smart bus shelters/stops project integrates existing infrastructure and adds technology that people rely on while getting around; the project reimagines the digital urban experience. This project is a public private partnership between City of West Hollywood and Outfront Decaux Street Furniture LLC.”