This presentation demonstrates the key challenges and considerations to addressing the needs of a future transit system. Exploring these design strategies will lead to a discussion on the potential opportunities in reconsidering the role of transit stations in our urban environment.
Transit Architecture in the COVID-19 Era
Topics: Urbanism / COVID-19 / Design
Length: 1 hour l What's included: video, quiz, certificate of completion
This webinar is available to stream!
The goal of this presentation is to outline the necessary steps that station planners will have to take when building safe and resilient transit facilities in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Using existing projects as examples, this presentation demonstrates the key challenges and considerations when addressing the needs of a future transit system. Exploring these design strategies will lead to a discussion on potential opportunities in reconsidering the role of transit stations in our urban environment.
The forceful response to COVID-19 from governments and transit agencies worldwide has demonstrated that widespread, rapid changes to our urban environment are necessary and expected in the face of a global pandemic. As we move through the response, reopening, and recovery phases of this pandemic, changes to the transit environment are inevitable. It is incumbent on designers of future transit facilities to consider these changes holistically and realize potential opportunities to transform our built environment to have lasting impacts for future generations. The task of designing agile, flexible, and responsive transit facilities is the best opportunity to “future-proof” our public infrastructure for unforeseen challenges.
Transit stations must incorporate new design principles to respond to a future pandemic and promote the safety of passengers. The result will be an improved transit environment based on the following design elements:
1. A simplified, streamlined station experience: removing unnecessary transactions and surfaces that can be touched, while providing for a new set of station amenities–including screening areas and sanitizing stations.
2. Flexible station planning space that allows for agility in transit operations: designing for multiple scenarios and maximizing both interior and exterior spaces to allow for physical distancing and enhanced screening/ticketing.
3. Station architecture that incorporates new standards of safety and hygiene: analysis of station capacity, improved air quality, antimicrobial surfaces and enhanced signage that supports
both regular transit operations and a potential emergency mode.
In the wake of past pandemics, city-builders, designers, and planners took on the task of transforming our public infrastructure to create a safer, productive, and vibrant city. Our next challenge as designers is to continue this tradition as we re-think the transit environment.
By the end of this session, participants will be able to:
- Contrast the needs of the passenger prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and after.
- List the primary challenges in station design when creating a safe environment for passengers during a pandemic.
- Identify strategies for organizing passenger movement within a transit station to minimize physical contact and separate streams of movement.
- Relate principles of station design to the urban environment and other building typologies.
Subject Matter Expert
Welland Sin, OAA, Associate - Manager, Architecture
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