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Kimley-Horn Supports Tactical Urbanism Through Bus Stop Furniture Design Competition

Iván Gonzalez, AICP

Iván Gonzalez, AICP

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Ft. Worth, TX

About the Glen Park Neighborhood

Glen Park is a cozy neighborhood in southeast Fort Worth, punctuated by reasonably priced homes and a close-knit, established community. The neighborhood sits on the edge of the Trinity Metro transit network and contains 36 bus stops; however, only six of these stops have benches, and only four have a shelter or cover.

Transit Stop Furniture and Tactical Urbanism

The Tarrant Transit Alliance, Tarrant County Community College students and faculty, and the local community collaborated to develop a transit seating and shelter furniture design competition for five locations in the Glen Park neighborhood. The locations were carefully selected by the competition planning committee based on a survey of Glen Park residents, bus stop ridership study data, and sidewalk conditions.

The competition revolved around the idea of tactical urbanism—or planning-by-doing—where community members engage in neighborhood building or improvements characterized by immediate action intended to instigate lasting positive change or effect.

Kimley-Horn Involvement

One of Kimley-Horn’s founding disciplines is transportation. It continues to be a cornerstone practice of our firm and, more importantly, a passion for our people. Along with a monetary donation, Kimley-Horn’s Fort Worth office also wanted to provide hands-on support for this critical initiative in their community. Iván Gonzalez, AICP of our Fort Worth planning team volunteered to serve on the jury for the competition and use his planning knowledge and industry expertise to help select the most effective and functional design for the new bus stop furniture.

In his role as a jury member, Iván carefully reviewed each team’s design for benches and associated shelters. Emphasis was placed on durability, functionality, and overall integration into a neighborhood setting. The versatile winning design checked each of these boxes.

“I really enjoyed shaping discussions on how this project could provide more than just furniture but statement pieces for residents to feel proud of and spur further improvements to build on the momentum of the neighborhood.”

The Winning Design and Long-Term Effects

After careful consideration of all detailed designs, the Jury selected Dahlia Garcia and Jose Rodriguez (Tarrant County College and University of Texas at Arlington) as the winners. This team’s design will be fabricated and installed in the Glen Park neighborhood in spring of 2021.

Kimley-Horn and all other participants and supporters realize this competition in tactical urbanism will provide much more than seating for bus stops. Offering comfortable locations for riders to wait can encourage ridership and promote bus transit as a mode of transportation to work, school, or recreational activities. This furniture design competition and the Glen Park neighborhood bus stop improvements—initiated and executed by a community invested in the future—will encourage economic growth and improve quality of life for residents by delivering a more enjoyable rider experience.

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