Send Us Your Nominations for the Sorriest Bus Stop in America

Last year's winner: this sorry bus stop in greater St. Louis
Last year’s winner, a very sorry bus stop on Lindbergh Boulevard in greater St. Louis.

Streetsblog’s “Sorriest Bus Stop in America” contest is back by popular demand.

Last year, readers nominated dozens of forlorn bus stops to call attention to the daily indignities and dangers that bus riders have to put up with. This sad, windswept patch of grass between two highway-like roads in a St. Louis inner suburb took the prize.

We’ve been hearing from readers and transit advocates who want another shot to name and shame the public agencies who’ve let bus stops go to seed. So the Sorriest Bus Stop competition is back. (If you have a great bus stop you want to recognize, don’t worry, we’ll cover that in a different competition later this year.)

We’ll be doing the contest as a Parking Madness-style, 16-entry single elimination bracket. Below is an early submission from downtown Austin and reader Chris McConnell, who says, “This has to be the saddest #busstop in Austin. It has no shade, no seating, and no stop ID for checking times. AND it’s at the main transfer point downtown. FAIL.”

Screen Shot 2016-06-03 at 12.56.46 PM

You get the idea.

Send us the sorriest bus stops in your city, either in a comment or with an email to angie [at] streetsblog [dot] org. Submissions should include:

  • At least one photo of the bus stop.
  • A brief description of why it’s so terrible and which public officials/agencies deserve to be shamed.
  • An exact intersection, address, or other location marker that can be pinned in Google Maps.

The more convincing your entry, the better your chance of landing in the field of 16 that readers will vote on. Submissions are due on June 30.

  • J

    From DC, this bus stop adjacent to Fort Circle Park has no sidewalk, no crosswalk, and even though you can literally see the many houses on the other side of this linear park, there is no path to cross the park. When it rains, bus riders stand or walk in the mud to get here. This land belongs to the National Park Service, which for decades has neglected to build sidewalks on streets within and adjacent to its parks in DC. Despite all this neglect of pedestrians, someone paid a good deal of money to build a concrete bus pad to make sure that the pavement doesn’t get messed up from buses stopping there.

    https://goo.gl/maps/kT9ouF8c7VR2

  • AMH

    How about nominations for misnamed streets? That “boulevard” in St Louis is a BINO (Boulevard In Name Only).

  • Joe R.

    The saving grace there is at least the street you need to cross isn’t a wide, dangerous car sewer. It’s still a lousy bus stop, but it’s not compounded by being in a place where people take their lives into their hands to reach.

  • jwcbklyn

    The best part: that particular chunk of land was originally acquired for a pleasure-motoring parkway connecting the forts (Fort Drive). Although part of the Fort Circle parks, it isn’t an actual Fort site – just a random strip of poorly-maintained grass that was intended for a road. But once the WPA-era recreational parkway fad was over, there wasn’t the money or political interest in building the road. And so it remains, one of DC’s many jurisdictional scraps carved out by bureaucratic absurdity, in this case the kafkaesque NPS machine that refuses to acknowledge that this coulda-been parkway strip is not an Amazon wilderness.

  • bolwerk

    My submission from last year probably still makes everything else obsolete, including prior winners!

    Got to double check to make sure it hasn’t been improved, but I doubt it has been.

  • Elizabeth F

    I agree, there are much worse.

  • Jason

    This NYC MTA “bus stop” is actually located in Nassau County along Rockaway Turnpike along the Q113/Q114 route to Far Rockaway. When the route is in Nassau, no signs are posted at stops. You just have to kind of know they exist and what buses stop there. Some stops, like this one, have what is left of an old bench.

    This stop is on an extremely busy and congested road with no shoulder. The bus must stop in the right lane of fast moving traffic to load & unload. Passengers must remain dangerously close to the traffic at this stop.

    Stop is at Rockaway Turnpike and Reyem Drive in Lawrence, NY. https://www.google.com/maps/@40.6317342,-73.7387037,3a,75y,186.36h,65.2t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sMCBfnuOuI5TNK8WZb8O7-Q!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

  • Bernard Finucane

    Kingsport TN

  • rgbose

    North Outer 40 Rd at Maryville University in St. Louis County. 45 MPH speed limit.

  • neroden

    Geez. Does the sidewalk on the end of that expressway lead anywhere, or do bus riders hike across the grass?

  • neroden

    OK, so passengers have to wait in the middle of a parking lot, and have to walk across a parking lot to get to the bus stop. There is no sign. No bench, no amenities. No sidewalk, no crosswalk.

  • rgbose

    That’s a shoulder for an on-ramp to MO-141. The university is to the right. You have to walk through the grass to get there.

  • Adam Herstein

    Morrison Bridge in Portland Oregon. Bus stop is on a glorified highway off-ramp.

  • Adam Herstein

    Here’s the stairs leading up to the bus stop.

  • Adam Herstein

    Stairs leading up to the bus stop.

  • Bruce

    51st Ave NE & 146th St NE, Marysville, WA – Community Transit

    On this 40 mph rural highway, the 202 bus comes by every 40-60 minutes on weekdays and forms one of the county’s few frequent routes by combining with another route (the 201).

    You get to wait on a tiny shoulder and try your hardest to avoid falling into the (often muddy and waterlogged) ditch. At least you have a crosswalk, nevermind the nice bus pullout and sidewalk for southbound riders. This stop happens to serve the off-base commissary (military grocery) and thus I use it quite often.

    Did I mention how traffic speeds by at 40 mph (or faster), often coming in the form of huge semi trucks? It’s a death trap of a bus stop.

  • flyingember

    In Kansas City the WB 63rd St at the multi million dollar Swope soccer complex (63rd and Hardesty) finally is becoming not so sad.

    The stop was at a point with no sidewalks in any direction to get to it. It’s next to 40mph traffic and until recently the sign was literally at a muddy hole in the ground.

    Did I mention this was the bus stop that serves the multi million dollar Swope soccer complex? $13.4 million for soccer and no money went to transit access improvements. Guess people who watch soccer don’t take the bus.

    This isn’t surprising since the MLS team located their main stadium in a place on the very edge of the city that has is lucky to have bus service to it, but you couldn’t necessarily get home without camping out at the stadium because too much connecting service stops before some night games end

    The city is building a bike trail at the 63rd St stop and took down the stop pole for now. There still won’t be a sidewalk to cross 63rd but hopefully people won’t need to stand in the mud because of this improvement that has nothing to do with busses.

  • Jules1

    This is a great idea, but how about nominees for the BEST bus stop as well? If we’re going to shame the worst, we should also praise the best.

  • Frank Kotter

    How about this one where a pedestrian was killed earlier this year?

    https://goo.gl/maps/h5h8sqDKTUr

    The absurdity of the total disregard for anyone not in a car can be seen. Yes, that is a bus stop without any way to leave the bus stop. Across the street is a sidewalk (the only one that reaches anything to the west) which ends mid-block.

    https://goo.gl/maps/JxQ5mU8VW3L2

  • That’s coming in the near future, as noted in the post.

  • I love the additional sad element of the abandoned shopping cart next to the trash can.

  • Joe R.

    Yes, it adds a nice dystopian touch to a pretty depressing scene.

  • Jeffrey Baker

    Yeah, I think I mentioned the same thing last year. If that is a city, I’m the emperor of Rome. It looks exactly the same as I-5 in the middle of nowhere:

    https://www.google.com/maps/@38.6772277,-121.95185,3a,75y,17.23h,80.71t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1stdGuWOF7oKJJ614BvJH_Hg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

  • laldm109

    There are a few good ones on Highway 5 in the southern suburbs of Buffalo. Here’s my nomination:

    (next to the abandoned bar on the right side of the road — the little red and blue sign)

    https://www.google.com/maps/@42.7838394,-78.8491477,3a,75y,220.82h,91.8t/data=!3m7!1e1!3m5!1scKExNyAW8bRp1eZhAvHRKA!2e0!6s%2F%2Fgeo3.ggpht.com%2Fcbk%3Fpanoid%3DcKExNyAW8bRp1eZhAvHRKA%26output%3Dthumbnail%26cb_client%3Dmaps_sv.tactile.gps%26thumb%3D2%26w%3D203%26h%3D100%26yaw%3D83.294167%26pitch%3D0!7i13312!8i6656

    Probably not all that well used, since it’s only served like 8 times a day by express buses…but I don’t know how you could cross this 55 mph 6-lane highway to get to it, even if you wanted to…

  • Jeffrey Baker

    In case the maps link doesn’t expand to a picture.

  • Michael Lewyn

    I’m not sure this is the worst overall, but if there was a separate category for “Worst Bus Stop In A Place With A Sidewalk” the absence of signage would make this stop a very strong contender.

  • Michael Lewyn

    What makes this impressively bad is that because the bus stop is right next to the foliage, the pedestrian has to stand dangerously close to the stroad. By contrast, the stop could just as easily have been placed a few feet closer to the strip mall so that bus riders have a little more room.

  • Michael Lewyn

    The Austin stop is not great, but is far better than most of the stops below because it has 1) a sidewalk and 2) directions as to which routes stop there (which is not something you can always count on).

  • Bruce

    They’d be heavily skewed towards transit centers and bus-to-rail transfers, so there should be specific exceptions. “Bus Stops with a View” is a great category to consider.

  • Frank Kotter

    Before I forget, It is a bit of a far shot for the contest but the story is good:

    When I was living in Duluth, MN, I saw a bus stop bench get taken out by falling concrete from an overpass above. The city has since moved the stop just around the corner and replaced the bench, but the overpass is just as ugly and neighborhood-crushing as ever.

    https://www.google.de/maps/@46.7659639,-92.1258173,3a,75y,337.64h,82.74t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s1Bzom1vTTrzdqFqTE0c8cA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656!6m1!1e1

  • Frank Kotter

    Holy smokes! I spoke too soon about the infrastructure improvements made….

    Please everyone, turn the streetview 90 degrees to the left. You can’t make this stuff up!!

  • Paul Moser

    US-40 outside New Castle, Delaware. One of the deadliest roads in the state.

  • Dark Emeralds

    Yep, that’s a nasty one, all right.

  • zucho drig

    There is a walkway under overpass in 1/3 a mile to the south. Why didn’t they just place the bus stop there?

  • neroden

    Yeah, there really should be categories….

    ADA Violation Category: There is no way to get to the bus stop without hiking across grass, jumping a fence, or walking in traffic. Or, the bus stop itself requires waiting in traffic or in the mud.

    A lot of terrible bus stops won’t have much of a chance in this competition simply because they aren’t in the ADA Violation Category. There should be a separate “Not Actually Illegal” category…

  • EF

    Nice bus stop in a ditch between Asheville NC and Black Mountain on 5-6 lane US Highway 70. Ridership has been so bad that the route is being reduced significantly, Maybe because the bus stops are in a ditch? This is route 170 served by Asheville Transit. The location is 2913 US-70, Black Mountain, NC 28711 https://goo.gl/maps/YPY7HmwLU3n

  • Caleb

    This one is super inconvenient. By the time I see the bus coming, it’s too late to take the elevator down to catch it.

    16th and Walnut St. in Philadelphia

  • Michael J. Walk

    Bus stop in Maryland on Reisterstown Rd. northwest of Mt. Wilson Ln. Here’s the maps link: https://www.google.com/maps/@39.391693,-76.7423658,21z

    The bus stop is terrible for the following reasons:
    1) It is on the shoulder (no sidewalk) of a busy, 4-lane arterial (with additional right turn lane in this particular location),
    2) walking to the stop entails walking along a narrow shoulder trapped between a guardrail and the road,
    3) people waiting at the stop have to stand on the shoulder, trapped between the road and a guardrail,
    4) behind the guardrail is a significant drop off,
    5) the stop is only 1 block away from a signalized intersection with some sidewalks, businesses, and crosswalks and could be moved relatively easily.

    This is stop of the Maryland Transit Administration (www.mta.maryland.gov).

  • Paul Moser
  • Jay

    Southbound US-29 (Colesville Rd) at Crestmore Drive: https://www.google.com/maps/@39.0281063,-77.0092222,3a,75y,266.26h,72.26t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1sTrlMz9FaHy94zrUbZH5erA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656

    Served by 5 bus routes (3 by WMATA and 2 by Ride-On, Montgomery County, MD’s transit provider). No sidewalk/shoulder/crosswalk, plus steep terrain, forces people to walk in the road, which has a 40mph speed limit. Credit to MD State Highway Administration and the Montgomery County Department of Transportation, whose long-running quest to turn US-29 into a limited access highway for commuters from the northern suburbs leads to inevitable absurdities like this one. Sadly, the area is actually fairly dense and has good transit service, but things like this serve to stymie transit usage while reinforcing auto-dependency.

  • erik gould

    https://www.google.com/maps/@41.8486771,-71.414203…

    I believe this has to be one of the saddest and most dangerous bus stops in Providence, RI. Sliver Spring St. is very busy and typical of many Providence streets, very narrow. There is no sidewalk, there is no crosswalk. In the summer what little space there is becomes encroached with foliage, in the winter snow is piled up against the rusty fence. On the other side of the fence is a steep slope down though the brush to railroad tracks and an industrial park. It’s poorly lit and visibility for motorists is poor. RIPTA is the agency, http://www.ripta.com It is a city street. http://providenceri.com

  • James Panero

    Prairie Stop, Route 41, north by northwest of Indianapolis. Proximity to low flying crop-dusters, tanker trucks.

  • Sameer Moudgil

    I took a little detour on my way back home today to highlight this poor Trimet bus-stop near me on Oregon state highway 8. It has no bench, no shelter, no sidewalk and no crosswalk access within 0.3miles. It sits sandwiched between the edge of a 50mph 7-lane stroad (including 2 bike lanes) and a heavy railroad track. The cherry on the cake is the Ford car/truck dealership on the other side of the stroad. I wanted to get a better angle from near the bus-stop but I couldn’t muster up the courage to cross this freeway-like behemoth. I wonder how the lady in the google street view image managed to do it.

    https://www.google.com/maps/place/45%C2%B030'05.8%22N+122%C2%B056'30.8%22W/@45.501626,-122.9440737,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x0!8m2!3d45.501626!4d-122.941885

  • Robert

    I wish my town had bus stops. But that stop in Austin is ridiculous, and why put a stop on a highway like road anyway?

  • https://youtu.be/DDDOPX6NAyA?t=1m in Knoxville, Tn lol

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