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Climate Resolve Launches Bus Stop Heat Bracket


Transit commuters in Los Angeles understand that waiting for the bus can be a challenging experience. With little to no protection from the elements, daily commuters are left unprotected during the blistering summer heat, when temperatures can reach more than 100°F. As climate change continues to reshape how we navigate our daily lives, bus shelters with various amenities can be game changers when it comes to mitigating exposure from the summer heat.

Climate Resolve’s “Hottest in LA: the Bus Stop Heat Bracket” project, funded by LA2050 and the Goldhirsh Foundation, identifies the hottest, most frequented bus stops in LA County that are in need of improvements.

Project Progress

To identify the “hottest” bus stops in LA County, Climate Resolve completed a data analysis using NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) ECOSTRESS from the summer months of June–September 2022 along with LA County transit ridership data. Our analysis identified eight highly used transit stops within four different regions of LA County (see map) that both had a mean temperature greater than or equal to 105°F and had no shelters or shade structures. Once the top 32 hottest bus stops were identified, our team created “baseball-style” cards for each stop with an image of the location, daily ridership data, ground surface temperature, bus lines information, and frequency of bus services. This information would tell us how many people boarded the bus at each stop, how long the waiting period was, and how hot it was at each stop.

Although setting up our polling system and bracket website was challenging, we were able to find a platform that met our needs. And so, in honor of our basketball friends out there preparing for March Madness, Climate Resolve officially kicked off its “Hottest in LA: the Bus Stop Heat Bracket” on Tuesday, March 14th, and will run its first round of voting for a week. Our digital campaign will include social media polls and digital ads to encourage Angelenos to cast their votes. The first round of voting will narrow down our bracket from 32 bus stops to the “Sweaty 16”. The second round of voting will follow immediately and also run for a week. Once we reach our “Exhausted 8”, we will release an announcement along with our in-person engagement calendar.

What’s Coming Up? Community engagement at the “Exhausted 8” bus stops

In April, over the course of two weeks, Climate Resolve staff will visit the “Exhausted 8” to conduct surveys and solicit feedback from Angelenos who frequent those stops on what elements they would like to see and how to best redesign stops for shade, hydration, and comfort. Daily transit riders will be able to directly influence and provide input on solutions that work on the ground. Our surveys will be conducted in English and Spanish and our goal is to engage with 200 transit riders. When speaking to Angelenos, we will also gather photos, firsthand experiences, and impressions and share them on our social media platforms. We are excited to receive input from the community as it will guide this project forward and lead to changes.

Climate Resolve has already been approached by various community stakeholders interested in supporting the project and inquiring more information on how to best aid the engagement process. We will work with them to identify community leaders and to conduct our surveys. After our in-person community surveying is completed, the voting platform will go live again and the community will select the “Final 4” bus stops.

Renderings for the “Final 4”

Once the “Final 4” bus stops are selected, Climate Resolve will partner with a digital artist to create renderings of each of the “Final 4” with the community-identified amenities. The Climate Resolve team will then use these renderings and findings to facilitate meetings with relevant jurisdictions to advocate for the installation of these shelters, sharing community feedback, and technical advice on implementation. For bus stops that do not make it into the final selection, we will package community feedback and send it to the relevant jurisdictions, and will also prioritize these spaces in future campaigns. At the end of the campaign, our renderings of the “Final 4” and community engagement metrics will serve as deliverables. While we do not anticipate jurisdictions being able to install any shelters by the end of the year-long grant period, we will be able to track formal commitments from local jurisdictions, as well as plans to install bus shelters. The impacts of the lack of bus shelters in LA County is an issue that has been researched by the UCLA Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies and recently covered in the LA Times. We hope our campaign helps shed a light on the importance and need for adequate shelter and other much needed amenities for all Angelenos to have a safe, protected, and dignified public transit experience.

AuthorClimate Resolve