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MARTA aims to upgrade 1,000 bus stops with shelters, benches

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For now, just one in 10 stops has amenities like seating and shelter from the rain

A MARTA bus downtown in 2010.
UIG via Getty Images

Only 10 percent of MARTA’s 9,553 bus stops feature amenities like shelters or benches.

But if the transit agency’s board of directors okays a proposal next week, about 1,000 of those stops could get major improvements, including shelters, seating, leaning rails, trash cans, and solar-powered lighting, according to a report by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The first phase of this improvement initiative, which could begin in earnest in August, would upgrade 200 stops over the course of a year.

Exactly which stops hasn’t been determined, but they’ll be ridership hubs with at least 25 boardings daily, according to the paper.

The breakdown of how upgrades will be distributed across counties is more clear.

Fifty-seven of the stops would be in Atlanta, and 57 would be elsewhere in Fulton County; plus 56 in DeKalb County, and the other 30 in Clayton County.

MARTA’s board of directors is scheduled to vote next week on whether to contract Tolar Manufacturing for the $7.1 million job of producing the shelters, benches, rails, garbage cans, lighting, and cases for schedules and maps for 1,000 bus stops.

After securing the manufacturer, MARTA would reportedly need to find a firm to install all the new hardware.

The whole initiative could take about five years to finish.