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TTA - Urban Furniture Design Competition - Registration Closes March 1

Due to the extreme winter events, we are extending registration to March 1 and have rescheduled our workshops. 

More details below

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Attention Students, Architects, engineers, construction managers, artists, and designers - Register Today & Help Glen Park address the lack of bus shelters in their community - Design modular urban furniture to be used in a tactical urbanism project to help improve the rider experience for members of the Glen Park Neighborhood. The winning design will be built and installed in five (5) different locations across the Glen Park neighborhood and featured in a “DIY Transit Ridership Improvement handbook"!

Are you excited about design and the urban environment?

Do you want to see your projects fabricated and installed?

Want to make a difference in your community?

Find out more about our Project below!

Project Background





Awards &





About TTA


To provide some support for the competition winners, TTA will offer prizes for the top 3 designs in the form of money and/or in-kind donations.

Individuals and businesses are invited to become a sponsor and assist us with these efforts.

Please note: TTA is a 501c4 organization & this financial contribution is not tax-deductible

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Project Background

Figure 1: A map of Glen Park. Stops in yellow have a bench. In red, have a shelter.


The neighborhood of Glenpark is a community in the Southeast corner of Fort Worth, TX, at the very edge of the transit network. According to the Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI), 20% of Glen Park residents identify as Black, and 73% are of Hispanic origin. This 1.46 sq mi neighborhood has 36 bus stops that serve the community there, with buses coming every 30- to 60-minutes. However, only six of these stops have seating, and only four of those have shelter. Since 2019, the neighborhood has actively petitioned Trinity Metro and the City of Fort Worth to upgrade these stops to protect their riders from the rain and hot sun. So far, they have not been successful.

Tactical urbanism is an innovative approach to neighborhood improvements that use short-term, low-cost interventions to create long-term change. You can find examples of successful tactical urbanism projects across the US. In fact, in 2017, Fayetteville, AR, took the step of actually encouraging its residents to construct and lead tactical urbanism projects by creating a new city-sanctioned permitting process. Similarly, in 2014 in Rochester, NY, Reconnect Rochester worked with the city to develop temporary wooden bench blocks to provide seating for their transit riders. As a result, they now have fiberglass "bench blocks" adopted by the city as a permanent seating solution!  Using a consumer-driven, democratic, piece-by-piece "see what works" strategy, this creative, powerful tool releases the pressure both on city employees, civic leaders, and the citizens of Fort Worth.

In partnership with the Glenpark Neighborhood Association, the Tarrant Transit Alliance, local artists, community organizers, and other partner organizations have developed a neighborhood-based transit project to create the ideal transit rider experience in this neighborhood.


Texas is now the only state in the US that does not have dedicated funding in its state budget for urban transit. Trinity Metro is the least funded transit authority for a major city in Texas. Compare DART's $244 per capita spending in 2018 to Trinity Metro's $122 per capita. Fort Worth has 342.2 sq mi of land that Trinity Metro must cover (not including the service they provide to other member cities in Tarrant County), all with this limited budget. The average cost of installing one of Trinity Metro's bus shelters is around $10,000.  The combination of a limited budget, and a sprawling service area, means that Trinity Metro must make difficult decisions between providing service across the city, the frequency of their service to those areas, and rider amenities like benches and bus stops.

Project Activities

Through research, the project planning committee selected five (5) locations to activate with "Urban Furniture" designed to provide seating and shelter protection. These designs will be fabricated and installed through a collaboration between the Tarrant Transit Alliance, TCC students and faculty, community artists, and local volunteers.

At the end of the project, the Tarrant Transit Alliance will create a "DIY Transit Ridership Improvement Toolkit” to share with other neighborhoods that will include –

  • The permitting process & compliance; 

  • An approved Operation & Maintenance Plan; 

  • An outline of considerations including the bureaucratic (e.g., code and ADA compliance) and political issues (e.g., lack of funding);

  • Blueprints of the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd winning competition designs, including materials and costs.

The 1st place winning design will also be fabricated and installed in the five selected locations throughout the neighborhood.

Building Equity and Belonging

The pandemic has disproportionately affected People of Color in America. Factors that contribute to this include, but are not limited to, an unequal representation of minorities in essential work settings, unequal job & wage loss, and a lack of financial reserves. According to the Pew Research Center, 61% of Hispanic Americans and 44% of Black Americans said that they or someone in their household had experienced a job or wage loss due to COVID in April of 2020.

Pre-pandemic, 44% of Fort Worth residents lived under the ALICE threshold. The ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) Threshold represents the minimum income level necessary for survival for a household. The average cost for transportation in Fort Worth is $12,885/year. Many struggling families rely on a poorly funded public transit system to get to work, school, and other essential trips. Waiting for an hour at 106° without shade or a place to sit is dangerous and untenable.

Like many Fort Worth neighborhoods, Glen Park’s community has felt left behind by a slow-moving bureaucratic system. This project aims to facilitate neighbor-to-neighbor support, providing the transit riders a dignified place to wait for the bus. Through tactical urbanism, this project will turn discouragement into empowerment.

Competition Information

Shelter Location Information and Considerations

The planning team for this project has selected five (5) shelter locations to focus on:

  1. Miller & Martin - Southbound
  2. Miller & Pierce - Southbound
  3. Wichita & Seminary - Mansfield HWY
  4. Wichita Street & Alcannon Avenue
  5. Wichita & Alcannon - Seminary

These locations were selected from Glen Park residents’ survey data, a study of bus stop ridership numbers, and the sidewalk conditions.

We encourage competitors to find and visit these locations and take pictures of the sites in their current conditions.

To view aa map of these locations, please click on the button below.

View Map


Feb 1 - Registration Opens, Feb 24 - Optional Workshop #1, Feb 26 - Optional Workshop #2, Feb 27 - Optional Workshop #3, Mar 1 - Registration Closes, Mar 15 - Project Submission deadline, Mar 29 - Winners' announcement

The Designs will be Fabricated March 29 - April 11 and Installed April 11 - April 16.  

The Designers are encouraged to be a part of this process.


If you are interested in participating in the Urban Transit Furniture Design Competition and want to learn more about the project, we recommend that you attend some of these online Workshops.

These workshops are a great opportunity for you to learn more about the project, meet the planning team, and have your questions answered. All of these workshops will be available as a video recording on the project website after each event.


Students, Architects, Engineers, Construction Managers, Designers, Artists, etc., are invited to participate in the competition. We encourage you to have multidisciplinary teams. Please note that at least one student must be a part of each group.

  • Participants must register by March 1, 2021.
  • One registration = One project.
  • Participants may submit various projects but must register each entry.
  • There is no limit as to the number of participants per team. Individual entries are accepted.
  • After your registration has been approved, TTA will send a specialized registration number (within 24 hours), which will be necessary to include with your submission.
  • Participants will be allowed to engage with local design/build professionals to help mentor them through this design process.
  • At least one student must be on each team.



    • This is an anonymous competition, and the registration number is the only means of identification.

    • The official language of the competition is English.

    • Contacting the Jury is prohibited.

    • As the competition organizer, the Tarrant Transit Alliance reserves the right to modify the competition schedule if deemed necessary.

    • The Tarrant Transit Alliance will be permitted to fabricate, print, and publish all the competition designs. Participants will be given credit in any publication of the designs.

    • The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) is granted a royalty-free, irrevocable, unlimited license in any materials or other products that may be subject to intellectual property rights of any manner produced in connection with this project and The competitors acknowledge that APTA may use such materials, in whole or in part, in any manner or medium it sees fit, and may sub-license additional such uses by others without additional compensation in any amount.

    • Entrants will be disqualified if any of the competition rules are not considered.

    • Participation assumes acceptance of the regulations.


      Awards & Recognition

      First place winning team will:

      • Have their design fabricated and installed in the Glen Park neighborhood. 
      • Have the opportunity to present their design at the Design-Build Institute of America - Southwest Region Annual Conference
      • Have their designs featured in the "DIY Transit Ridership Improvement" toolkit, with recognition.
      • $500 cash prize.
      • Special invitation to a private zoom lunch with local architects & designers.

      Second Place winning team will:

      • Have their designs included in the "DIY Transit Ridership Improvement" toolkit, with recognition. 
      • $300 cash prize.
      • Special invitation to a private zoom lunch with local architects & designers.

      Third Place winning team will:

      • Have their designs included in the "DIY Transit Ridership Improvement" toolkit, with recognition.
      • $250 cash prize.
      • Special invitation to a private zoom lunch with local architects & designers.

      Submission Requirements

      This is a digital competition, and no hardcopies are necessary. Entrants must submit their proposal no later than March 15, 2021 (23:59 hours US Central Time) via the submission form below - 

      The project submission must contain the following files:

      1. Two boards with the project information, including plans, renderings, sections, and perspectives. Participants are encouraged to submit all the information they consider necessary to explain their proposal. These boards should be 24″(h) X 48″(w) in a HORIZONTAL format. The resolution of the boards must be 150 dpi, RGB mode, and saved as JPG files. The upper right corner of each board must contain the participation number. There should not be any marks or any other form of identification. The files must be named after the registration number followed by the board number. For example: 0101-1.jpg and 0101-2.jpg.
      2. A DOC file containing the project statement. This file must be named after the registration number followed by the word “statement.” For example: 0101-statement.doc.
      3. A DOC file containing the entrants’ personal information, including name, address, and email. This file must be named after the registration number followed by the word “info.” For example: 0101-info.doc.
      4. If the submission site does not work, you can submit your entry using a file sharing service like wetransfer Dropbox or Google Drive to rachel@tarranttransitalliance.org.

      Additionally, designers must be willing to be involved with the construction process and modifications of the design.

      Design Parameters:

      • The design's materials should cost no more than $400 total (c. $100 for a seat design, $300 for a shelter design).
      • The design should be furniture-like in form (as opposed to structure-like or building-like)
      • The design should be modular - configured to be just seating, just shelter, and both.
      • The design should be easily bolted together and bolted to the ground.
      • The design should be portable - manageable pieces in size and weight.
      • The design should allow the bus driver to see those waiting, and vise versa.
      • The design should consider the safety and comfort of the passengers and those near the shelter.
      • The design should be inclusively designed and accessible for all (including compliance with all current ADA standards)
      • The design should be simple in materials and simple in design.
      • The design should be something that the Glen Park neighborhood is proud to have in its neighborhood.
      • The design needs to be something that anyone can easily piece together.
      • Materials or resources to fabricate should be readily accessible.
      • Wind mitigation needs to be factored to keep it from blowing away.
      • The design should be able to be customized (painted, logo added, adjusted to meet permitting needs, etc.)
      • The design should not be considered hostile architecture.
      • The design should consider the needs of the community it serves - Trashcans, free library, access to food/drinks, etc.
      • The design should be built to last 3 years or more.

      Project Statement Guidelines:

      • 600 words or less: How the project meets the Design Parameters & Project Goals

      • A detailed list and cost estimation of materials


      Who can participate in the competition?

      Anyone can participate, however, you must include at least one student in your group.

      Can we submit more than one entry?

      Yes, but each project must be registered individually.

      Can we submit printed boards?

      No, this is a digital competition, and all submissions must be in digital format as outlined in the competition brief.

      Is there a specific size requirement for the design?

      There is no specific size requirement. However, it must fit in the areas selected and be considered urban furniture instead of a structure.


      (682) 231-2036

      PO Box 470474
      Fort Worth, TX 76147


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