With more than 125 million riders each year, it’s crucial for the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) line in San Francisco to keep the city moving without a hitch. Where even the smallest hiccup can mean chaos, incessant escalator breakdowns were resulting in major inconveniences and distress for commuters – particularly those with mobility challenges.

Caused by exposure to inclement elements, these escalator breakdowns became the driving motivator for the design of street-level canopies that would protect people and escalators from the rain.

Project Essentials

  • LocationSan Francisco, CA
  • ClientNelson/Nygaard Consulting Associates, Ltd.
  • ArchitectVIA Architecture

Fast + Epp was engaged for the preliminary design of new canopies at the entrance to existing stations on Market Street. Our primary design considerations included ease of construction and installation along a busy urban street, as well as repeatability for use at multiple station entrances.

Besides rain protection, the canopies will feature a digital display to show train arrival times, a new security grille (which will lock at the street level at night), security cameras, and new lighting. Our preliminary design work is part of a larger initiative to install canopies at San Francisco’s downtown stations from Embarcadero through to Civic Center.