Design Considerations – Light Rail Train Stations

Light rail train stations are a unique occupancy in the eyes of the building code, given their transient occupants, large fuel loads in the form of train cars, and necessary interface and connectivity to surrounding public elements.  The required protection features and allowable design characteristics are distinct from most other building types.

Of particular importance is the specific allowance in NFPA 130 Section 5.2.4 for allowable vertical openings and interconnection between floor levels, which helps to aid pedestrian movement between various parts of the station:

In recognition of the additional hazards present in light rail stations and the interconnection of floor levels, NFPA 130 contains additional fire rating requirements to ensure public safety.  Most notably, all non-public areas of train stations are required to be separated from the public portions of the train stations (NFPA 130

These non-public spaces can include mechanical equipment rooms, electrical rooms, storage rooms, battery rooms, employee-only spaces, and more based on the station’s infrastructure requirements.

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