The TransitScreen service is a live, real-time display of all transportation options within close proximity of a determined location (including bus, light-rail, bikeshare, and carshare). The screen makes multi-modal travel information more accessible, viewable and engaging so that commuters, visitors, and employees can make informed decisions about travel options. TransitScreen is currently available in 20 other locations in North America including Washington DC, San Francisco, Baltimore, Houston, Raleigh-Durham, Salt Lake City and San Diego.
The screen installed in the lobby of the Seattle Municipal Tower is the first Transit Screen in Seattle. We are proud to showcase this new technology along with companies such as Amazon and Children’s Hospital who also plan to install these screens.
This is a great development for riders, especially the combination of modes such as bikeshare and carshare. I hope it gets more widespread adoption, and I love how SDOT is getting scrappy and installing real-time information where they can, whether it’s these transit screens or the One Bus Away signs that started appearing a couple years back.
And yet, if I can be a design pedant for a second, it bothers me that Seattle transit information systems put so little thought into a common visual vocabulary. Metro has their signage and schemes, ST has theirs, and SDOT is just looking for ways to make people’s lives easier on a shoestring. Nothing stands out to give the rider a uniform sense of “oh, there’s transit service over here.”
It would be so wonderful if, at some point, someone came along and did for Seattle’s transit wayfinding and signage what Vignelli’s 1970 standards manual did for New York’s MTA.