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Public transport information for blind and partially sighted people

Brighton & Hove

This measure aimed to improve accessibility and public transport provision for people who are blind or partially sighted in Brighton & Hove by providing audio devices, known as React units or talking bus stops, to relay the information displayed on Real Time Information (RTI) signage.

Public Transport Information for blind and partially sighted people
Implementing sustainable mobility

This measure aimed to improve accessibility and public transport provision for people who are blind or partially sighted in Brighton & Hove by providing audio devices, known as React units or talking bus stops, to relay the information displayed on Real Time Information (RTI) signage.

The ARCHIMEDES project allowed for 12 React units to be installed at 12 real time bus stops, thus improving access for those who previously used units in place at other locations in the city. In addition, the measure was able to fund a further 200 key fobs, which are used to operate the system, in order to allow a larger number of residents to gain access to the information and improve their confidence whilst travelling alone.

How did the measure progress?

The evaluation for this measure focussed predominantly on awareness, acceptance and usage of the scheme with both public and user surveys conducted to assess the impact of the measure. However, there were issues with low response rates, particularly in relation to the post-implementation surveys meaning that there is a need to interpret the measure results carefully. Nevertheless, the results do show a positive trend with the key findings being as follows:

  • The measure has a favourable cost benefit ratio of €1:11.
  • Increase in bus trips– User surveys indicate an increase in bus trips since the extension of the scheme through the CIVITAS project. For example, 25% more said that they travel by bus at least once a week.
  • High user satisfaction– 100% of users surveyed at the end of the project wanted to see an expansion of the system to other bus stops within and beyond the city.

 

What were the outcomes of the measure?

The evaluation concludes with the following key recommendations:

  • Coordination with a local blind society is very valuable to planning, uptake and success of such measures.
  • There is a need to consider the full journey and the system would benefit from an extension of audio visual information available on buses in order to help people disembark at the correct stop (complementing the units at bus stops which help them board the correct bus).
  • Consideration should be given to expanding the system for use by those with other forms of disability such as learning difficulties. This will increase uptake and reduce the cost per person of the infrastructure.

 

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Contact

Contact:
City:
Position:
Traffic Design Technician

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