This can operate in several different ways.  Structural changes can make trespass seem a less attractive proposition and influence attitudes or activities leading to trespass.  Changes in layout can direct and support correct behaviour and movements along safer routes.  Physical restrictions or increase in distances can influence access to the track or other place of risk.  Changes in layout can make errors or confusion less likely.

Usually at various points within stations, but could also be considered on approaches to foot crossings and might include some structural changes to access routes to depots or similar locations.

By whom? - Infrastructure owner or undertaking with responsibility for operations at a railway location.

Applicability / suitability for trespass types

Where there is potential for problems with trespass at a specific location (e.g. at platform end in a station) and these can be alleviated by changes to the main flows of passengers in a location.  

Trespasser type = Commuters, adults.

Trespass events = Unintentional, Convenience, fare evasion, recreation, theft.

Observed behaviours = Unintentional movement into a prohibited or higher risk area, exiting at the platform end or through gaps in fencing, crossing the track.

Potential Motivations = Not understanding rules, lost, shorten distance or time to reach a location, perceiving risk to be low, personal financial gain – calculated or habitual.


High effectiveness

Can be highly effective against some types of trespass, if simple, logical and direct pathways to exit/enter and move around the railway location can be created.

Likely to have immediate effect, as long as the preferred routes are available, accessible and perceived as expedient to people.

Any effect is likely to be maintained as long as the perceived benefit is maintained. If this relies on additional interventions (e.g. fencing, sanctions) to restrict choice of an unsafe route, the durability will depend also upon the continued effectiveness of the additional interventions.

Factors influencing effectiveness

Routes to the higher risk areas are protected (e.g. by fencing) or sightlines to places of risk are obscured (barriers to minimise the decision to trespass).  

Sightlines to preferred routes are clear.

There are viable, safe, alternative routes – people need to be able to see the benefit in taking a route.

Used in conjunction with other interventions - physical barriers to guide people through a station, signage and appropriate lighting, with sanctions where appropriate.  

How to apply or implement, including dependencies

In creating safe routes across the station, these should be simpler, but these don’t always have to be shorter. People won’t choose these if they take too much extra time or effort.

Place bridges and subways appropriately on routes to exits. People will use these if they perceive that these are convenient.

Make bridges and subways accessible with lifts or ramp access, and with appropriate lighting as part of considerations for safe use.

Where designed well, with improved access to safer areas, may reduce the need for other interventions e.g. surveillance and enforcement.

Needs careful thought about the implications of any changes (e.g. locking an exit to a station) as people are likely to have a desire to get to a location on the other side of the railway track and a safety intervention could lead to new locations for trespass events.

In studies of pedestrian choices, if an alternative walking route took 50% longer than crossing at ground level, they wouldn’t use it.  Pedestrians were happy to use the route if it took the same time as the ground level route.

Subways and bridges are viable solutions suggested in focus groups and likely to be used if these are more convenient for them than another route.



Can be high cost where larger infrastructure changes, but can also be lower cost (e.g. securing an exit gate).