Now that Paris has bus lanes on almost every boulevard, we can expect their transit agencies to continue investing and innovating around their frequent and popular bus services. Today we get "the bus stop of the future," where designer Marc Aurel has packed in every convenience that will fit in the space, plus a few more.
Yes, it's still a bus shelter, but the idea is to make it both more useful and more of a social space. People may come here for a range of things other than catching the bus, so that social interaction and the life of the street intermix with waiting to produce a more vibrant, interesting, and safe environment. It's the same principle by which transferring passengers can help activate civic squares. From Bati-journal (my rough translation):
This experimental station at boulevard Diderot is not just a place to wait for a bus. Covering an area of 80 m2, it was designed as a multi-purpose public space … . Here you can buy a bus ticket, get information about the neighborhood, have a coffee, borrow a book, play music, recharge a phone, buy a meal to take away, rent an electric bike, stay warm while eating a sandwich, or set up a bag on a shelf to do your makeup. Variable light adjusts for day and night conditions. This project will also be the first urban test of materials and technological innovations … such as ceramic furniture invented by Marc Aurel, and a sound design integrated into the fabric of furniture …
I'm disappointed they didn't include an art gallery with some durable lendings from the Louvre, on the model of Louvre-Rivoli station.
But seriously: This is what a major bus stop or station might look like if you really, really valued buses, and also value the principle that uses of the street should be intermixed so that they contribute activation, interest, and safety to one another.