If You’re Gonna Make Something Wheelchair Acce…




Here’s some examples awkward accessibility being a thing:

Your at a hotel that has a lift to get you from one sub-floor to another, but the lift can only be unlocked and operated by one specific person that the hotel now has to go find. Sure, they’ve made the entrance to the sub-floor is accessible, but now it’s a thing.

The buses are wheelchair accessible but the driver has to stop the bus, take 30 seconds to lower the goddamn ramp, move passengers out of their seats, hook up the straps and then secure you in the bus. Sure, they’ve made the busses accessible but now it’s a thing.

The restaurant has an accessible entrance, but it’s past the trash room and through the kitchen. Sure, the restaurant is accessible, but now it’s an insulting thing.

Here’s some great examples of accessibility not being a thing:

The train to the airport pulls up flush with the platform. I board with everyone else and sit wherever the fuck I want. Riding the train is accessible and not a thing.

In Portland, I press a button the side of the streetcar and a ramp automatically extends at the same time the door opens. I board in the same amount of time as everyone else. This is not a thing.

I get that it is difficult to design for wheelchair accessibility, but folks need to start considering the overall quality of the experience versus just thinking about meeting the minimum requirements.

For the love of all things holy please pay attention to this

This is why universal design is so important. I had a great class that focuses on applying universal design aspects of architecture into teaching. Accessibility ideally should be integral to the design in the first place, not added on as an after thought.