BehiG - Disabled accessible construction in
public transport

In a town or city, stopping points are a part of the social fabric. They provide orientation, create points of identification and offer a place for municipal or private services. In short, stopping points are important public spaces.
Policymakers also understand this. The Disability Equality Act (BehiG) regulates matters relating to participation in social life by people with disabilities. This also includes specifications in the area of public transport. The federal law stipulates that transport companies, municipalities and cities are obliged to ensure barrier-free access to public transport by the end of 2023, as well as create or adapt stopping points in their respective regions.
BehiG-compliant stops have a high stopping edge. As well as the specific geometry and character of the stopping edge, other aspects also play an important role. Below, we summarise the specifications in more detail. The emphasis is on bus stops outside of urban areas.
In principle, BehiG-compliant stops aim to fulfil the described purpose, which is to enable people with disabilities to use public transport independently and autonomously. However, there are a number of other benefits for bus companies, seniors, parents as well as all other users. Quicker boarding reduces waiting times and the changeover of passengers takes place more quickly and smoothly. Ground-level access also makes it easier for seniors, parents with prams or travellers with luggage to access the vehicles. Other advantages are found in the clean structure of the platform edge, which must be free of objects.
Requirements that make it easier for people with a visual impairment to use a stopping point are sometimes of limited benefit to people with walking disabilities or wheelchair users. The spectrum of requirements is wide and the careful coordination of all measures as well as the comparison of measures demand comprehensive planning effort.
In many municipalities, there are a range of stakeholders in any stopping point project. It is not uncommon for the owner of the road, who is generally responsible for creating platform stopping edges, to be someone other than the person responsible for creating other stopping point infrastructure. Transport companies are also involved in the planning and delivery of specific infrastructure elements. Often, engineering offices play an important role in the coordination of planning measures and alignment between stakeholder groups. SMARTstop supports these measures with comprehensive planning fundamentals that correspond to the current standards, guidelines and recommendations. The aim at all times is for station infrastructure to be incorporated cleanly and appropriately into the stopping point project.
Obstacle-free stopping points must ensure that people with disabilities can enjoy equal, autonomous and spontaneous use of public transport, as described by the BehiG. To this end, they must meet the following requirements:
· A high stopping edge with no steps between the vehicle and stopping edge, for barrier-free access to the vehicle
· Sufficient manoeuvring areas at the doors and sufficient pass-through widths along the stopping edge
· Tactile-visual indication of the boarding position for the visually impaired at the first door of the vehicle
· Standardised positioning and accessibility for passenger information and facilities
· Information transfer in line with the two-senses principle
The height of the stopping edge must be aligned with the vehicles operating at the stop. The standard is a height of at least 22 cm along the entire length of the stopping edge. Curbsides with a rounded form or an additional indentation (e.g. Züri-Bord) have proven to be effective.
Stopping points should be planned with as little gradient as possible so that wheelchair users can alight and disembark independently. The camber (cross slope) should be a maximum of 2% and ideally run towards the centre of the carriageway. If the general positioning of a stop in sections of track with more than 3% longitudinal slope is unavoidable, the longitudinal slope should not exceed 6%. However, in such cases the stopping edge must not feature additional cross sloping. The HSI® ONE waiting shelter modular system was developed to meet these new specifications. If the dimensions are adhered to at a stopping point, the waiting shelter and prefabricated foundations can be moved accordingly. The waiting shelter supports the requirements listed below or fulfils them entirely in specific cases.
In exceptional cases, it is possible to make minor adjustments to the standard during the planning phase.
There should be a passage width of at least 1.20m between furniture elements (e.g. waiting shelter) and the stopping edge over the entire length of the stopping edge. To safeguard independent entry and disembarking for wheelchair users, the stopping point must have a completely obstacle-free manoeuvring area of 5.40 m length and 2 m width. The HSI® ONE waiting shelter with 4 elements is designed to allow the internal dimensions of the foundations with side walls to suitably enclose this area. The manoeuvring area can thus be straightforwardly combined with the shelter. A free manoeuvring area of 1.40 x 1.40 m is stipulated for the area in front of information carriers. If the information carriers are installed in the waiting shelter, this area can be combined with the manoeuvring area and/or with the covered waiting area for wheelchair users, encompassing at least 1.10 x 1.40 m. Ideally, these areas should be separate. The waiting shelter can be configured to enable both the manoeuvring area in front of the information carrier and the covered waiting area to be available to wheelchair users.
The standard version of HSI® ONE meets these requirements, provided that the stopping edge is implemented on site in accordance with the standards. In exceptional cases, the dimensions can be adjusted during the planning phase in line with the anticipated inclination. For glass panes, graphic patterns that deviate from the standard pattern are possible. There is broad leeway with regard to the individual designs for glass panes as well as numerous options in printing and finishing techniques. BURRI will be happy to advise you in more detail. On a traverse with a maximum distance of 30 cm from the finished flooring, it must be possible to identify by touch the entire width of any overhanging side walls without a direct connection to the floor. The side walls of the HSI® ONE modular stopping point system, which can be ordered as an option, are placed directly on the foundations, which protrude over the finished flooring more than 3 cm over the entire width of the side wall.
The horizontal illumination intensity at a stop with a low number of users must correspond to a minimum of 15 lx. With the additional lighting option of around 25 lx, the HSI® ONE modular waiting shelter system comfortably fulfils this requirement. The lighting package in the waiting shelter is also designed in such a way that the surface of the timetable display offers 100 cd/m2 with minimal glare.
Information carriers should be mounted to ensure that the uppermost line of information is max. 1.60 m above the finished flooring. If all inclinations along the stopping edge are incorporated in the design and according to the standards, the information display can be straightforwardly mounted on the pre-assembled fastening points of the HSI® ONE modular waiting shelter system, with easily adjustable height.
Seating at stopping points should be at a height of between 45 and 50 cm. If the stopping edge is in accordance with the standards and the waiting shelter can be moved in accordance with the planning documents, the HSI® ONE modular system is designed to offer optionally configurable seating at a height of approx. 48 cm from the finished flooring. The seating geometry is tailored to the needs of elderly people and can be positioned in any element of the waiting shelter. In this way, it is possible to make fine adjustments, while necessary manoeuvring and active areas for wheelchair users can be coordinated appropriately.
Stopping edges with a height of 22 cm should be marked with a white marking line directly along the stopping edge.
The boarding position at the first door of the vehicles used must be indicated with an attention field measuring 0.90 x 0.90 m. The attention field is implemented at a distance of at least 0.30 m from the stopping edge.