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Academic journal

Universal design in metro stations - A case study in Copenhagen and Vienna


Publication date
1 November 2023
Yasmin Haase
  • English
  • 2023


Universal Design in public transport is indispensable for the independence of individuals and allows people to participate in society. Therefore, barrier-free metro stations are an essential part of public transport in Copenhagen and Vienna. By looking at Frederiksberg station in Copenhagen, which is situated within a fully automated metro network, and Längenfeldgasse station in Vienna, which is not fully automated yet, the approaches towards inclusive built environments are analyzed. 

The research was conducted through two methods. First, an evaluation tool was applied in one station of each city, providing insights on positive and improvable criteria for different user groups concerning the accessibility of the station surrounding. Secondly, through go-along interviews, remarks by mobility-restricted people were gathered to obtain information beyond the applied catalog.

Despite many existing standards within this field, both stations reveal deficiencies for all examined user groups concerning accessibility. Among others, Frederiksberg station in Copenhagen lacks ideal infrastructure for wheelchair users and people with hearing difficulties. Furthermore, Längenfeldgasse station in Vienna shows potential for improvement, especially for vision and hard-of-hearing people. Additionally, evaluation tool outcomes were confirmed through the go-alongs, and further details concerning specific needs were revealed. 

Recommendations for improvements concerning both stations stem from existing standards, interviews with persons of the target groups, and a comparison to the respective other metro station. Different user groups have contradictory requirements for a metro station area; therefore, designing a metro station requires a sensitive approach.

Document: Universal design in metro stations - A case study in Copenhagen and Vienna.

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25 APRIL 2024
Universal design in metro stations - A case study in Copenhagen and Vienna