Living in London, it is inevitable that at some point you will be waiting for a bus. Have you ever wondered about bus stops?
- Some are just a post & a sign on a crowded pavement or in a rural area:
- Some have shelters to keep you dry, and some have digital signage to tell you when each bus will arrive:
(Richard Hooker “By the Bus Stop” series)
Miss Hughes made me think about bus stops. She has always wondered about how some bus stops are able to tell you when the next bus will arrive – like this:
- How do you think these information signs may work? What is the control ie what triggers a particular bus to show on the screen? What inputs (information) are involved – how is this communicated? Note – they don’t tell you when the bus is timetabled, but when it will arrive.
- Why do you think trains (usually) arrive and leave exactly on time, but buses don’t?
- There are other ways you can find out when a bus is due, using an app such as London Bus Live Countdown. Have you ever used an app like this? Does it work? What information can you get from this app? Is it useful?
- If you had to wait for a bus every day of high school, and the average wait time was 5 minutes each way, how much of your school life would be taken in total waiting at bus stops?! Does this shock you?
Some other questions about bus stops:
- Where there is a bus shelter, how big a space does the bus stop take up on the pavement? Can you draw/ map this space in your classroom/ home? Is it bigger than your bed?
- How could this space be used in a more interesting way? Could you design a better /more interesting bus stop now you know how much space you could use?
- Can you make it interesting, as well as practical?
- Have you ever thought about why bus stop “seats” are so small and they no longer use benches?
Here are some photos of bus stops around the world. You can click on each picture to make it bigger. Do they give you any ideas?
- What’s clever/ special about them?
- Who paid/ pays for them? Why would they do this?
- If they need power, where does it come from?
- What might go wrong?
(These pictures have come from various websites, but I can’t credit them all with a link as the sites may contain inappropriate material)