Regional Bus Sign & Shelter Project

Example Shelter

Purpose:  To install new bus shelters and related amenities at high-priority bus stops around the PACTS region.  Installing these shelters in high-priority locations will benefit the region and transit providers by increasing general awareness of transit availability, increasing customer safety, comfort and confidence in the service, improving accessibility to all customers and reducing demands on paratransit services. All of these should combine to improve regional transit ridership.  New, clearer and more uniform signs at will also be installed at all bus stops, improving customer perception and knowledge of the regional transit system.

Status: All transit stops in the Greater Portland region have been assessed to determine where new passenger shelters would be most beneficial and feasible. The new shelters will take advantage of a recent state law that allows advertising at bus stops. Proceeds will first be used to maintain the shelters with any additional funds supporting transit operations.

GPCOG staff are assisting the Greater Portland Transit District (Metro), South Portland Bus Service, and Shuttlebus-Zoom with the coordinated implementation of this project in their respective service areas.  Shelter procurement and site design is now underway, and installation is expected to begin this fall.

Budget:  $440,000 (Phase I); $520,000 (Phase II)

Scope: GPCOG staff have prepared a Regional Bus Sign and Shelter Study Report and Implementation Guide to assist the fixed-route transit agencies in executing this project. A 3-page Executive Summary of the project is also available.


Sign Component of Sign & Shelter ProjectMETRO/SPBS Stop Signs

While the majority of planning and funding for this project has been focused on transit shelters, the project also involves designing and printing new transit stop signs for the fixed-route bus service providers in the PACTS region. While this process should be quicker and simpler than the shelter portion of the project, it has been placed on hold while the Southern Maine Area Transportation (SMART) initiative is underway. The SMART initiative is currently exploring the potential for consolidating two or more of the seven transit providers in the Greater Portland Region, and so designing and printing of new transit stop signs will wait until after that process is complete.

A total of $31,000 has been set aside from the overall project budget for design and purchase of regional transit signs, which will remain while shelter purchase and installation occurs. Additional guidance may be released once the SMART initiative is nearing completion.

For more information, please contact Ben Lake at