[International Day of Persons with Disabilities] STL further improves bus stop accessibility

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[International Day of Persons with Disabilities] STL further improves bus stop accessibility

Canada NewsWire

LAVAL, QC, Dec. 3, 2019 /CNW Telbec/ - In 2018–19, the Société de transport de Laval (STL), jointly with the City of Laval, coordinated work to improve accessibility to 185 bus stops on its regular network. These improvements made accessible or increased accessibility conditions for more than 15% of stops in service along the transit authority's 15 routes. Hence, a total of 481 bus stops are now fully accessible1, in addition to another 363 accessible stops for which assistance is advised. This includes cases where the access ramp slope is steeper because of the roadway and/or sidewalk design. Overall, more than three out of four stops on those 15 routes are accessible.2

The work completed in 2018–19 mainly involved creating or enlarging waiting areas, replacing or adding bus shelters, and coordinating sidewalk repairs with the city. Overall, the improvements mean that boarding and exiting buses is now easier, while paths to buses and waiting areas are safer and easier for users to move around in. The boarding/landing zone at each stop is also easier for bus drivers to see.

These improvements, at the cost of $500,000, were made possible by the funding up to 90% from Canada and Quebec' Governments in the implementation of the Public Transit Infrastructure Fund (PTIF). The other 10% borne was paid by the STL. 

"We are well aware that there are still not enough accessible bus stops in Laval, and that's why we've redoubled efforts in the past few years," says Éric Morasse, Chairman of the Board, STL. "The work completed in just two years—in just two construction seasons, in fact—is proof of how seriously we are committed to improving accessibility of all of our services." He adds: This process may appear simple, but it requires multiple actions, cooperation and consensus-building, not only by the STL but also with the City of Laval. Smart land-use planning in Laval is a challenge that we are determined to address over the long term."

Features of a fully accessible bus stop

  • Optimum access ramp slope – The height of the stop zone (sidewalk) is approximately 15 cm, reducing the slope to 10% or less.
  • Manoeuvrability with an assistive mobility device (wheelchair, three-wheeled or four-wheeled scooter)3 – The depth of the stop zone is at least 2.1 m.
  • Safe waiting area – There is a bus shelter or concrete pad adjacent to the sidewalk.
  • Safe, obstacle-free path to the stop – For example, access to the boarding zone is made easier, notably via a paved curb cut.

Criteria used to select stops for improvement

  • Stops on the network's new accessible routes are given priority.
  • Geographical distribution across the entire Laval territory.
  • How busy the stop is.
  • Complexity and constraints (overall feasibility; municipal right-of-way or private land requiring owner agreement).

This initiative was rolled out as part of the STL's 2017–2021 public transit accessibility development plan, which includes a series of small- and large-scale measures covering all aspects of accessibility, from a redesign of the STL website (scheduled to go live in spring 2020) to introduction of interior display units with audio announcements in all buses, the addition of at least two accessible routes per year and, of course, the maintaining of ongoing dialogue with groups representing persons with disabilities in Laval. In addition, since 2014, all new buses added to the STL fleet have been equipped with access ramps and appropriate interior layouts.

About the Société de transport de Laval

The STL develops and operates an integrated network consisting of buses, school transport, shared taxis, and paratransit transport which together combine for 19 million+ trips per year. The STL's regular bus network consists of 46 routes, some 2,700 stops and covers over 1,400 kilometres across the Laval territory. The STL is among the most innovative transit authorities in the world, thanks to initiatives such as being the first in North America to operate a 100% electric 40-foot bus, and introducing as early as 2010 a passenger information system that dispatches real-time bus arrival information to riders. In 2017, the STL rebranded its Quality Commitment Program into the only customer service pledge of its kind in Canada. That same year, it also became the first transit authority in Canada to accept credit cards on buses. www.stl.laval.qc.ca.




See "Features of a fully accessible bus stop," p. 2


Some four-wheeled scooters are accepted, depending on their dimensions.


See Note 2.


SOURCE Société de transport de Laval

View original content: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/December2019/03/c3204.html

Copyright CNW Group 2019

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