METRO Universal Accessibility Improvements – Houston METRO

Houston, Texas

LAN has provided engineering and architecture services for Houston METRO’s Universal Accessibility (UA) Initiative since September 2020. The initiative enacts METRO’s commitment to make its network of more than 9,000 bus stops accessible to all people, to the greatest extent possible. METRO divided the City into six zones, with LAN selected to provide services for Zone 5 (southwest Houston). As of May 2022, LAN has designed/assessed more than 420 bus sites, implementing various upgrades to sidewalks, wheelchair ramps, bus stop pads, bus shelters, and surrounding infrastructure.

Data Collection

The LAN team performs substantial data collection in support of its UA design improvements, including field site assessment, gathering of existing drawings, and sight visibility triangle analysis. This effort establishes both the condition of the site (non-compliant infrastructure, presence of driveways, cracked pavement, etc.) and the required coordination measures. With 213 sites to date located in Houston’s numerous special management districts and zones, prioritization of sites requiring more extensive coordination and/or specialized design has proven key in mitigating project delays. Strategic “bundling” of sites has likewise streamlined the overall coordination effort, enabling the team to adhere to METRO’s two-week review turnaround, and to make the best use of available funds. Outside of METRO, LAN has coordinated and submitted plans to agencies including the Office of the City Engineer, Memorial Water Authority, and Memorial Park Conservancy for permits and/or approvals.

Design

Design focuses on new or improved bus pad sites that are in compliance with both METRO’s latest standards and the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)—as well as strategic upgrades to the overall user experience. Improvements include installation of larger pads, widening and tying of sidewalks into the pad site, and the addition or upgrade of ADA-compliant truncated domes and wheelchair ramps. These improvements generally follow METRO’s standards, but the variable urban streetscape has often demanded creative design implementation—LAN adapting the “standardized” stop site into unique, context-sensitive footprints. The LAN team is also overseeing additional service performance enhancements at some sites, including studies to optimize traffic signal timings. These improvements increase road-user safety and tie into additional METRO service upgrade initiatives.

At a glance

220+bus stop improvements

Features

Sidewalk improvements

Wheelchair ramps

Bus shelter foundation

Bus stop pads

Services

Transportation

Transit

Client

Houston METRO

Related Work

Rail and Transit

Transportation Services

Rail and Transit

Transportation