PPS worked with the Corpus Christi Regional Transportation Authority on a series of projects to improve streets around transit facilities. Community workshops were held to develop innovative ways to enhance trolley and bus stops, the City Hall bus transfer center, and to introduce streetscape improvements. In the first phase, newsstands and plant vending facilities activated the plaza, vending carts were added, and the creation of an arcade façade enlivened one block of a retail area. Other improvements were angled parking in suitable areas of downtown, and a work of public sculpture in an area adjacent to a trolley stop.
In the next phase, PPS worked on the new Staples Street City Hall bus transfer center. Uniting seven routes, the center opened in February 1994 with new landscaping and amenities, including an archway created by 1500 children and adults in the community. PPS received a Federal Design Achievement Award for work at this station, as part of the National Endowment for the Arts Presidential Design Awards Program.
Following up this assignment, PPS developed a plan to improve the pedestrian environment around the station and to link it to a nearby low income neighborhood on the other side of a major interstate highway. Recommendations included adding crosswalks, introducing traffic calming measures and enhancing landscaping and lighting in order to improve pedestrian access to the station, encourage more pedestrian use and help revitalize local businesses.
Transit is a component, but by no means the extent, of your experience at a station that is a place. Memorable and enjoyable stations and stops that create value for neighborhoods are perfectly attainable. In fact, a transit station or stop can serve much more than a transportation function; it can be a setting for community interaction, a place that fosters a diversity of activities.