Gimme Shelter: Orlando-area bus stops get theme park treatment

Tuesday, January 31, 2012
An artsy bus stop in Orlando. (Courtesy Entech Creative)

An artsy bus stop in Orlando. (Photo: Raymond Martinot)

A series of sculptural bus stops will be installed throughout Orlando as part of an effort to bring art into the community. Entech Creative, a production engineering company, teamed up with Walter Geiger, of Walt Geiger Studios, to design and produce the “Cascade” series of shelter structures. Each bus stop has four to five uniquely shaped panels ranging from 15 to 16 feet high. Their form is suggestive of a waterfall, undulating to provide commuters with shade and shelter.

An artsy bus stop in Orlando. (Courtesy Entech Creative)

An artsy bus stop in Orlando. (Photo: Raymond Martinot)

Entech has extensive history in the theme park industry. In fact, Entech developed the technology that made these seamless panels possible for use in theme park installations. Each panel is coated with a fiber-reinforced polymer composite that gives strength and a finished appearance to a honeycomb structure underneath, a process that represents a breakthrough in composite engineering. The designers hope to the collaboration will bring art and architecture closer together.

An artsy bus stop in Orlando. (Courtesy Entech Creative)

An artsy bus stop in Orlando. (Photo: Raymond Martinot)

7 Responses to “Gimme Shelter: Orlando-area bus stops get theme park treatment”

  1. says:

    That’s their idea of shelter and shade? The architects should be forced to stand under those things in a heavy rain or forced to stand under them during a heat wave…on one leg. They couldn’t provide a bench? Someone should teach them about Universal design. The architects should stop thinking about pop art and actually spend a minute on solving the problem, provide comfortable shelter while waiting for a bus…this does not. Place a covered bench under that thing otherwise its useless. GIve credit to the photographer sticking around all day to catch the shade when it was just right. I doubt the bus company will schedule accordingly.

  2. Elto Desukane says:

    Another typical bus shelter with the walls (those that are not missing!) not reaching the floor nor the roof (if there is one). Not good in cold wintry weather. Bad design.

  3. Hubbard says:

    Its Orlando, snow isn’t going to be falling anytime soon, but it is still terrible for any sort of “shelter” for the given climate. As for providing shade, this thing is seriously lacking. I get the need for a playful design, but why do it at the expense of the user. The first photo, the shade is being provided by the neighboring trees, not the structure. In the second, it still has too many openings to do any good. Nice try but when there is rain, no one is going to be safe, left-right, top-bottom. Tho, on a good note, this is one bus stop that won’t be occupied by the homeless, as there is nothing to occupy.

  4. says:

    Hubbard, there is one more thing that I didn’t consider in my first comment. Security. There doesn’t seem to be any lighting anywhere near the bus stop. It doesn’t matter if there are no bus routes schedule after dark, the point is someone can wait behind one of those “giant sticks of chewing gum” and jump someone walking past. The city might be in for a lawsuit if something like that happened.

  5. Mary T. O'Connor says:

    As another voice in the chorus of dissent, everything about this is frightening. Orlando has scored a big success if there mission is to discourage the use of public transit.

  6. Pat NC says:

    I am so glad to see all the comments here – they are so spot on. This is a typical example of designers’ main objective being the attention of media and other designers. It is also the case of one group/class imposing its tastes and values on a different group, who unfortunately have to use it and live with it. It is the irresponsibility of the media – that gives these kinds of absurd exercises so much publicity – that encourages and sustains such approaches.

  7. Emily says:

    Yet another situation which reminds me why I left Orlando as soon as I was an adult. The Orlando powers that be are more concerned with making sure that bus stops aren’t welcoming to homeless people than they are with making public transit a welcoming option.
    1) The Orlando area has frequent sudden and short lived heavy downpours (most afternoons in summer) which those are useless in.
    2) The population in Florida is aging rapidly. This means that those who are no longer able to drive don’t have access to a shaded, dry seat while waiting for the bus. Encouraging people who shouldn’t be driving to remain on the roads longer than is safe so as to have mobility.

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