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Development & Transportation

Bus Stops To Incorporate iPhone-Like Wayfinders

Blue roadside signs reading “Bus Stop” could become a thing of the past as the Port Authority of Allegheny County begins its rollout of more robust bus stop signage this summer.

Starting in July, roughly 85 Downtown bus stops will be outfitted with signs that include route maps, bus schedules and frequency information. Port Authority spokesman Jim Ritchie said the new wayfinding system will eventually be at all PAT bus stops in the county.

“Some of [the bus stops] would provide also a little digital screen that might provide real-time information at the stop itself,” Ritchie said. “Those would be more like, if you will, a Kindle-like version that would provide a real-time feed at the actual stop.”

Ritchie said Port Authority would also be installing 7-foot kiosks with giant digital touchscreens at each of its five indoor light rail stations Downtown.

“It’s like a giant iPhone,” Ritchie said. “You can interact with it. You can find route information. You can get directions to where the closest bus stop might be that you need to use.”

He said PAT leaders are hoping the new signage and kiosks will make public transit more approachable for out-of-towners and residents who don’t ride regularly.

“It’s hard to figure out even where the subway station might be if you’re not familiar with the system, or, ‘Where do I go to catch that route to Oakland?’” Ritchie said.