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Putting the passenger first with TransLink’s design guidelines
Translink (Vancouver BC)
TransLink’s existing guidelines covered a wide range of transit facilities and specific attributes, but have been developed at different times over the past 5 years and for different purposes.
After successfully developing TransLink’s Transit Passenger Facility Design Guidelines in 2010, Steer Davies Gleave was retained to develop complementary Transit-Oriented Communities Design Guidelines, to more clearly articulate the importance of community design in supporting transit and active travel modes.
How we did it
Steer Davies Gleave’s approach involved an extensive review of existing TransLink documents, to identify suitable guidelines for universal inclusion, along with worldwide transit facility design best practice documents to supplement and enhance the existing guidelines.
Using stakeholder workshops, we produced a comprehensive Facility Design Guidelines document which was structured using three key elements: facility types, spatial zones and a modal hierarchy. By identifying facility types by level of design intensity, breaking a facility down into passenger use zones and clarifying the importance of designing for active and sustainable mode integration, the guidelines were given a context by which transportation and design professionals could more clearly understand their intent.
The Transit Passenger Facility Design Guidelines included a section specific to implementing universally accessible design guidelines for transit stations, transit fleet and corresponding transit amenities. Specific guideline recommendations included improvements to physical accessibility at transit sites, including barrier-free accesses, accessible bus stops and travel routes, appropriate placement/building requirements of amenities (i.e. placement of elevator, etc.), and barrier-free safety amenities (i.e. platform boarding edges with detectable warning surfaces). The Facility Design Guidelines further highlighted design requirements for universally accessible information within transit facilities, focusing on appropriate signage (i.e. Braille, universal accessibility signs, etc.), as well as appropriate lighting, audio and visual considerations.
A series of checklists to support the usability of the guidelines for the target audience, local government planning and design professionals, were also included.