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Urban public transportation APP redesign

Physical (and mental) disabilities/impairments range affect us at different points in our lives. They affect us in different ways and may require additional accommodations to allow us to function independently. Some impairments are brief; some are lifelong. These impairments can significantly affect our ability to use public transportation services.

The transportation systems may aspire to provide service to all users. Still, their ability to deliver on this is limited by resources (time, money, people, etc.), and additional factors are out of their control, i.e., construction outside stations.


Many people move through the stations every day, and virtually all of them carry mobile devices connected to the internet. What if we could utilize crowd-sourced information to provide almost real-time updates to transportation system infrastructure status so that users with impairments could reliably foresee impediments to their journey?



Research, Ideation, visuals, Prototyping


3 Month Project

Problem Research 

Tools Used 

Adobe CC, Figma 


Less than 25 percent of the subway system is accessible to people with physical disabilities—or people lugging strollers or suitcases, for that matter. “New York City is just stuck,” says Susan Dooha, the executive director of the Center for Independence for the Disabled, which is currently in the midst of several lawsuits against the transit authority. “They now need to bite the bullet and do it.” Presently, people with limited mobility can only really travel between the few stations with elevators, and then find other forms of transportation, like a bus, to get to their actual destination. Sometimes, though, they get off the train only to discover the station elevator is out of service. They’re then forced to get back on the train and try for another stop, call the fire department to carry them out, or, Dooha says, even crawl up the stairs. Faced with substandard services, a woman died in January trying to maneuver her child, who was in a stroller, down the subway steps.
In its new capital plan, the MTA earmarks $5.2 billion for station accessibility. Specifically, it plans to add elevators and ramps at 66 stations, and ensure that customers are “no more than [two] stations away from an accessible station” at any point in the trip. “We appreciate movement forward,” Dooha says, but the plan is “too little, too late.” The center will continue its lawsuit in pursuit of a “binding resolution” that would give a court the right to hold the MTA accountable.

Special cars

Of course, not everybody wants to listen in on your phone call. The MTA could consider adapting Japan’s controversial women’s-only cars into something better suited to the needs of New Yorkers. Quiet cars, where people aren’t allowed to talk, or family cars, where children are allowed to scream, could make passengers of all stripes more comfortable.

Ideation ...

Wireframing ...

Prototype I


User testing ...

Prototype II ...

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