Traveling, Inhabiting, Experiencing - A Phenomenology for Public Transit
Magazine article, 2014

The Nils Ericson Terminal by architect Niels Torp in Gothenburg, Sweden provides a framework for discussion on how to design for public transit. The paradox of public transport is its aim to move human beings with efficiency—to balance the urgent need for sustainable transport infrastructures with an appreciation of what it means to be human in such an environment. Phenomenology offers a theoretical base for architectural design practice that considers human movement and sensory experiences (Hopsch & Cesario 2011) as well as ethical dimensions (McCann 2011), addressing issues of security, orientation, climate, and beauty in an environment with risks for alienation. The article outlines the ethical and spatial paradoxes of efficient public transport. It proposes to think of and re-think methods and tools for early urban planning processes that further the encounter between humans and the built environment with a deeper knowledge of spatial urban form in an embodied context.



spatiality of situation




public transit


Lena Hopsch

Chalmers, Architecture

Cesario Marco

Rachel McCann

Environmental and Architectural Phenomenology

1083-9194 (ISSN)

Vol. 25 1 9-14

Driving Forces

Sustainable development

Areas of Advance

Building Futures (2010-2018)

Subject Categories


Philosophy, Ethics and Religion

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