If you’ve been following ioby, you may know about the incredible neighbor-led work in Cleveland, Detroit, Memphis, and Miami. In each of these cities, dozens of ioby leaders are working tirelessly to make their neighborhoods stronger and more sustainable.
The leaders behind this year’s Trick Out My Trip projects are shining examples.
Community organizer Kaela Geschke is rallying local artists and commuters to create Art Stop: More than a Bus Stop, a “neighbor-planned bus stop” in the Superior Arts District. The refurbished shelters will allow riders to take refuge from the elements, feast their eyes on a rotating selection of vibrant visual art, and enjoy the safe and convenient new features of solar-powered lighting and free wi-fi—all while waiting for a ride. “When hearing the word ‘transit,’ the concept that comes to mind is constant motion or movement,” Kaela says. “The ability to enhance this experience of constant movement is essential to the growth and viability of any community.”
Of her project Bus Stop Moves, ioby leader Allison Lukacsy says, “Our team noticed that waiting for the bus in Cleveland’s neighborhoods—on average 20 minutes—was idle time that could be put to better use by transforming waiting time into workout time with a bit of illustrated instructions and inspiration!” Bus Stop Moves will provide adhesive vinyl wraps, illustrated with simple, real-time exercises, to cover the glass panels of bus shelters in Cleveland neighborhoods were sedentary lifestyles and related illnesses like diabetes are on the rise. The exercises are meant for the average person to do in street clothes, on their way to or from work or school. As Allison says: “Next time you are waiting for a bus – don’t just sit there – don’t just stand there – bust a move with Bus Stop Moves!”
“With extreme weather in the summer and winter, Detroiters often have to deal with appalling conditions at bus stops, simply to get around our city,” says Renard Monczunski of his project, Adopt a Stop. “Lack of safety, lighting, seats, and information is the reality bus riders in Detroit face daily.” Renard and his team are adopting a bus stop on Warren Avenue which they will outfit with more ergonomic and accessible seating, current timetables, a weather shelter, and nighttime lighting. “By adopting a stop, we hope to bring more awareness to the underserved areas of the city that lack these basic amenities,” Renard says, “and to provide a more beautified, safe environment for the riders of Detroit.”
Ride, Rally, Ride is a two-pronged project led by Essence Jackson and Sara Studdard that will introduce permanent panels for bus stop schedules at the city’s major transfer points, and install three bike racks and bike work stations at popular transit destinations. “Downtown Memphis is an attractive place, both to residents and tourists,” says Essence. “This project will improve transit trips for thousands of Memphians, make our downtown more of an asset, and make getting around the city both easy and appealing.” As a major added benefit, Ride, Rally, Ride will be implementing some of the strategic points listed in the Mid-South Regional Greenprint, a 25-year plan to create 700 miles of greenways and bike paths across three states.
Susannah Barton’s project Safe Crossing at Overton Park started with a question: “How did the pedestrian cross the road at Poplar Avenue and Tucker Street?” When the answer came back, “Not safely!”, Susannah and her team began endeavoring to install new, high-visibility crosswalks on this heavily trafficked, seven-lane intersection. The crossroads is a primary entrance to Overton Park, the Memphis Zoo, Brooks Museum of Art, and Memphis College of Art, and is a heavily-used transit stop on MATA’s #50 route. “Visitors need safe access to these community assets,” Susannah says. Safe Crossing at Overton Park will also install visitor counters; the data they provide will help Memphis plan for additional multi-modal access improvements at this intersection and others.
ioby is thrilled to be continuing our longstanding relationship with the Miami-Dade County Office of Sustainability. “B.U.S. Miami is about creating community, and about using mass transit—which is something that we in Miami don’t do very often,” says Germane Barnes. His project, B.U.S. Miami, (which stands for Building United Spaces Miami) will transform the city’s now-barren bus stops into sheltered hubs for socializing and device-charging. Many Miami bus stops currently consist only of a pole in the ground. “When people have to stand—not sit—at an uncovered bus stop in Miami’s hot and rainy conditions, they aren’t too happy about that,” Germane says. B.U.S Miami will combine seats, shelters, cell phone charging stations, and an “umbrella share” system to make commuting by public transit a more comfortable, sociable, and attractive experience for all.
We’re so proud of all the creative, game-changing work ioby leaders are initiating in Cleveland, Detroit, Memphis, and Miami during this second round of Trick Out My Trip. If you like what you see, visit ioby.org/trip to follow each project’s progress, volunteer to help, or donate a bit of cash to the cause—this week only, we’re matching the first $100 of every donation made, until the money runs out!