StopInfo for OneBusAway Helps Low Vision Bus Riders and Others

There are many great reasons to use public transportation—convenience, cost, and concern for the environment are just a few; however, planning a bus trip to or from an unfamiliar place can present a number of challenges. Particularly for blind and low vision bus riders, finding a new bus stop can be difficult without prior information.

Computer scientists at the University of Washington are collaborating with King County Metro to create a website that gives bus riders helpful details about their bus stops. StopInfo provides information such as where the bus stop is relative to the street intersection, what kind of sign it has, and if it has amenities like a bus shelter or benches—details identified by blind and low vision bus riders in interviews as features they use to find and recognize a bus stop.

To access StopInfo on your OneBusAway smartphone app, click on the Information symbol (lower-case "i" inside a circle) next to the stop name.

To verify information about your stop, scroll down and click on "Verify or add stop information" at the bottom of the screen.

StopInfo uses a combination of information provided by King County Metro and submitted by site users. Any site visitor can improve its use by verifying what they see at a bus stop and reporting new information, which then appears to others StopInfo users.

StopInfo displays information using a "voting" system. A stop feature is considered verified once it has at least three votes and 75 percent agreement on one attribute. Unverified information is still shown to users, but is marked with an asterisk to indicate its uncertainty.

Since StopInfo's launch in mid-February, it has received more than 1,400 information submissions for about 900 stops in the greater Seattle area.

StopInfo is available online at, or on the go as an integrated part of the iPhone version of OneBusAway.

According to a study conducted at the University of Washington in April, blind and low vision users found the mobile app to be an accessible tool that helped promote unfamiliar travel and spontaneous trips. To read the paper in full, click here.

The StopInfo team hopes that new users will continue to make use of the app and help its growth by contributing information. Until December, StopInfo is offering free King County Metro bus ride tickets to users who create accounts with StopInfo and to top information contributors. For more information, visit the StopInfo FAQ.

One Bus Away serves up fresh real-time transit information for the Puget Sound region.

Reduce your wait time for bus and rail connections by checking One Bus Away on your smartphone or other mobile device, or from your desk computer.

For more information, click here.

Contributor Meg Campbell, a University of Washington doctoral student, worked with UW Computer Science & Engineering students and staff Cindy Bennett, Caitlin Bonnar, Aengus McMillan, and Alan Borning to develop StopInfo and now works with King County Metro to promote its use.