Public Transportation and Right-of-Way: Making the Connection
This session will focus on the interconnection of public transportation and compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in the public right-of-way, including design and field construction methods for pedestrian facilities and the challenges that are faced. Too often neglected by public agencies is the correlation between pedestrian facilities and access to public transportation, especially fixed route bus services, which provides people with opportunities for employment, and access to community activities, commerce and medical care. Public agencies may also find improvements to the pedestrian infrastructure can result in cost savings as people transition from paratransit to fixed route transportation.
Pedestrian facilities discussed will include bus stops, sidewalks, curb ramps, pedestrian pushbuttons, and crosswalks. Design and construction of each of these facilities must address how they are used, how they fit in with the existing built environment, and how they need to be accessible for persons with various disabilities. Public transportation issues will concentrate on paratransit and bus fixed routes and the need to have accessible bus stops along with accessible routes to those bus stops.
The presenter will bring firsthand experience on how the prioritization of funding for infrastructure improvements and effective use of those funds will result in cost savings and lasting changes that will benefit all pedestrians. Resources including the Transportation Research Board’s recent publication, “Strategy Guide to Enable and Promote the Use of Fixed-Route Transit by People with Disabilities” will be shared.
Linda Osiecki is a civil engineer with over 20 years of engineering experience ranging from road design to structural design. She has been involved with ADA compliance since 2005. Ms. Osiecki’s experience includes developing guidelines, reviewing designs, ADA inspections of construction projects, and responding to questions from design and construction personnel. This year she became a part of the Mid-Atlantic ADA Center’s Leadership Network.