Where the #@$% is the Bus?!

If you’ve ever taken the bus you know the whole waiting part can be a total drag. It’s usually my luck that I’ll be tempted by the nearest snack shop, run in for something quick, and end up missing my ride! This smart bus shelter design, imagined specifically for the city of Dublin, syncs with buses to provide riders with a visual indication of estimated wait times through simple, color-changing LED panels.

Designed for Dublin’s bid to the 2014 World Design Capital, designer John McGowan also thought the shelter should reflect characteristics of the city. The protective roof is composed primarily of fiberglass-reinforced concrete which is then coated in a thin layer of bronze; a material with deep historical roots in Ireland. Contrasting the traditional material, the form takes inspiration from Dublin’s Spire monument, an architectural design that has been heralded as one of the few to compliment the city’s traditional style.

Designer: John McGowan


  • Bossplaya says:

    cant wait to plank on that..

  • John McGowan says:

    Thanks for posting Yanko Design!

  • Mick.T says:

    Excellent! Id go for a ride in that! i mean wait for a ride

  • Ray says:

    I really like the idea. However, most people I know don’t like to sit back to back (with strangers) without some sort of barrier. It would also be cool if you could incorporate the bus’ capacity in the lighting somewhere (ex. on the seating platform); sometimes it’s worth waiting for the next bus if this one is crammed with sardines.

  • John McGowan says:

    Thanks for commenting Ray. Yeah I agree with you, My area is actually in Product Design so this is slightly more conceptual than my other work!

    • Jerry Sam says:

      Mr McGowan please let us discuss about your design through this email .Iam interested in your design.Thanks Jerry

  • Matti says:

    In my home town in Finland we have screens on bus stops that show the ETA for the next 2 buses on 4 routes. It shows the route number, time of arrival and/or time in minutes until arrival. All the buses are synced real time to these bus stop displays.

    Of course the Dublin system is visually quite a lot more stunning and easy to understand on a glance.

    Here’s a picture of the gruesomely ugly, yet informative system we have: http://joukkoliikenne.tampere.fi/media/user/files/cache/aikataulunayttto_uusi-650×294.jpg

  • SShiverBBrains says:

    I go to Parsons School for Design and we did a collaborative project with the New York MTA two years ago. I turned in a similar idea except the curb had an OLED strip to avoid the cost and annoyance of a giant glass box taking up half the sidewalk. They told me color readings were more expensive and less effective than a simple countdown clock, which they installed throughout NYC last year (and several other cities).

    Despite the fact this already exists I worry about the slanting design which only allows for headroom across about 1/3 of the space taken up. Also, if I lived across the street from an 8 foot tall color changing light it would drive me INSANE around the clock.

  • SShiverBBrains says:

    Oh, actually I was mistaken on the scale of this, scratch the headroom issue. However, now you have blocked the sunlight and view from the entire first and second floor of any building behind this.

  • Matt says:

    Little late with the basic idea, but least it looks good in concept….

    I came up with an award winning concept in 2006 while studying at QUT. It was very similar to yours in theory but without the excessive costs associated with the shelter, and possible complaints from locals about excessively light from large LED panel as SShiverBBrains commented on.

    I have seen a few others since mine, none before it. So I am interested to see how you go with your pursuit of this concept, if that’s your intention.

    My design had great interest from the local government in Brisbane, but would have needed to be implemented on a larger scale to be worthwhile…. any ideas on costs of your shelters + implementation of tracking into buses?

    With regards to Matti’s comments: In Brisbane we already had ETA implemented into some larger bus stations + all the busses, but found a countdown or timer system to cause anxiousness for passengers, especially when they were out by a few minutes which can happen.

    For others new to the concept of colour vs timers, the colour system allows for not only an easy to read system from a greater distance (especially for the visually impaired), but also a much more relaxing system (although I wouldn’t have red and orange flood of light into the area while waiting for 20 minutes (that amount of RED light cause anxiousness, or hunger… you could get support from Mc Donalds HAHA).

    Also I don’t see any way of tracking multiple buses on your design, but I am sure it’s easy enough for you to figure out 😉
    Keep up the good work.

  • Will B Doreb says:

    only problem i can really see with it is i live in alaska where everyone runs in the bus stops to get out the wind in the winter and it looks like this design only blocks 2 of 4 directions whereas the crappy ones currently in effect block 3-4

  • Vincero says:

    Very nice idea, I just think that this won’t work in busy cities. Only on places where just one or two busses come by and it really matters when the bus arrives. this won’t work in a city where the busses come and go every 2 minutes, the lights will just stay green. If instead of the coloured lights, it would show some kind of display with the remaining time or even the exact GPS location of the arriving busses, that would be sweet.

  • MT says:

    Wow! Such a long comment for someone so busy smelling their own farts all day.

Comments are closed.