Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space

"A community’s physical form, rather than its land uses, is its most intrinsic and enduring characteristic." [Katz, EPA] This blog focuses on place and placemaking and all that makes it work--historic preservation, urban design, transportation, asset-based community development, arts & cultural development, commercial district revitalization, tourism & destination development, and quality of life advocacy--along with doses of civic engagement and good governance watchdogging.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Crazy: BART is scheduling multiple community meetings out in the field to get input on seating configuration

Interesting that BART, the subway system in the San Francisco Bay region, is scheduling meetings out in the community to get input about seat configurations, versus the more traditional process likely to be followed by WMATA in seeking the same information. See the Patch article "Pick a Seat: BART Lab Coming to a Town Near You."

From the article:

Between now and the beginning of summer, BART is bringing a mobile lab filled with seats of different heights, widths and materials to communities.

The goal is to get feedback from commuters on what kind of seats they would like to see in a new fleet of BART cars scheduled to start hitting the tracks in 2018.

"What I might like might be different from what the public might like," said BART Board President Bob Franklin. "So, we're going to get a range of opinions from a wide variety of people." ...

On Monday and Tuesday, senior citizens and disabled riders will test out the seats at the BART offices. After that, a sampling of the seats will be packed into a trailer and taken to at least nine communities over the next two months.

This is the kind of prototyping that is typical of the design method, which isn't usually used in planning, which tends to rely on the more static "rational planning" method.
Design methodology

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