This is the second first-round matchup in the Sweet 16 round of our annual Sorriest Bus Stop contest. Polls are still open on our first-round bout, Philly vs. Quebec. Click here for that battle.
As a Streetsblog reader recently noted, the worst bus stops in America are definitely the ones that don’t exist at all … but there sure are a lot of barely-visible waiting areas that come pretty close.
For our second match-up in the Subpar 16, we’re focusing on bad bus stops that you have to really squint to find — if they’ve even got a sign to spot at all.
Here are two waiting areas that leave their riders wondering, and don’t offer a whole lot of amenities once you manage to track them down.
Lynchburg’s Magical Disappearing Bus Stop
Instead of getting your annual eye exam, here’s an easy way to test your vision: find the bus stop in this picture!
No luck? Here’s a closer look.
Located in the small city of Lynchburg, Virginia, this mid-block monstrosity is located directly adjacent to a residential university along a six-lane divided highway. The speed limits are technically 35 miles per hour, but locals say drivers go way faster — and of course, there are no sidewalks in sight.
But Streetsblog, you might say. At least that tree gives bus riders a little shelter from the elements!
Well, according to nominator @AustinGaebe, “The tree is too short to stand underneath for shade, so I see people sitting down under it on the grass. It’s just an incredibly demeaning stop that shows how much of an afterthought it was.”
Forcing your riders to play a high stakes game of I-Spy on the side of a highway just to catch the bus is one thing. Making them squat on the ground to avoid getting brained by a tree branch? That’s just cruel.
Austin notes that this stop is serviced by @GLTCONLINE, if you’d like to send them a heads up that it could use some rethinking.
Queens’s Highway Gore Disgrace
We’re gonna skip playing Where’s Waldo with this submission, for one simple reason: it’s an impossible game.
Yep: this sorry bus stop doesn’t even have a sign.
According to nominator Eric, this New York City nonsense is located in an industrial corner of the Flushing section of Queens, but all that means is that it serves way more riders than some podunk post — but those riders have to be in the know.
If there ever was a sign, it’s now missing. No crosswalks, sidewalks, [n]or any indication that this is a stop unless you’re using an app or [listening to] the automated stop announcements. Bus drivers who are aware will know to stay to the right and [be] prepared to stop; very often, they will spot a rider flagging the bus down at the last minute. … I’ve thought about using this stop when I went to Citi Field, or the (former) Mikkeler Brewery, but was always afraid of either getting run over or having buses not stop. You don’t expect this in NYC.
The road adjacent to the Flushing Failure boasts a whopping six lanes of traffic, and it’s flanked on the other side by a massive on-ramp — meaning that, in highway design terms, it’s technically located on the “gore.”
We can only imagine how gory things could get if a rider didn’t make it across that monster road in time.
So which stop is sorrier? We need your help to find out. Polls are open until 5 p.m. (Eastern time) on Friday, March 19.
Here’s the first-round bracket if you’re playing along at home: