From 2008 through 2010, Erik Carlson has won three competitions to design custom bus shelters for the Rhode Island Public Transportation Authority. Each commission was for a pair of artist-designed shelters for a specific under-served neighborhood in Rhode Island. Taking their cues from local design elements and history while adapting to unique site requirements, these shelters strive to become markers for the neighborhoods while providing shelter for bus passengers in these busy locations.

These photos show the bus shelters created for the Olneyville Square neighborhood in Providence, RI. Drawing influence from nearby storefronts and signage, these two shelters face each other across Westminster Street on this busy commercial block. The shelters have an angled orientation that allows for clear sightlines to approaching buses, and which also increases sign legibility for passengers approaching the stops on the bus. The shelters remain open on the sides at the request of adjacent businesses so that their storefronts and signage remain visible.


Erik Carlson: Artist + Designer, Project Manager

Wright Deter Enterprise: Fabrication + Installation

Structural Engineer: Bruce Davey Associates

Rhode Island Public Transit Authority: Commissioning Agency

Copyright © 2011 Erik Carlson / AREA C