The complexities of urban accessibility

The complexities of urban accessibility

The growth of cities makes many options for improvement available to their citizens. Population growth in a controlled manner improves general services and generates more wealth. But change also presents challenges that require restructuring in space and in the way we move. It is hoped that the new organization will be adapted to all people, so that opportunities are equitable. Good planning will achieve urban accessibility for all equally.

Obstacles to be overcome to improve urban accessibility

Getting out of their house could be a challenge for many people if things are not done well. Street furniture, sidewalks or signs can be an obstacle when the design is not appropriate. However, when the plan includes urban accessibility for all, these barriers are not an inconvenience.

  • Furniture elements. Urban elements can block sidewalks if criteria are not met. Bins, trees or signs should be well indicated and in accessible places but always without interrupting the passage.
  • Clear signs. Signs should be clear to everyone. Some cannot see the colours of traffic lights and need different acoustic signals or textures. Others can read, but may need additional or visual cues to understand clearly what needs to be conveyed. These and other details must always be taken into account.
  • Zebra crossings. Lowered zebra crossings and with clear access to the road will help those who cannot walk. Access ramps, elevators or escalators are also necessary elements to facilitate access to elevated areas.
  • Public transport. Accessible public transport is a priority. This means that stops and vehicles must be adapted. In addition, aid must be provided for the less favoured segments, although this no longer depends on an urban mobility consultancy, but on the public administration.
  • Private transport. Private transport of persons with reduced mobility should be a priority. Sufficient parking spaces reserved for those with different needs must be included in the designs.
  • Coexistence of vehicles and pedestrians. Many people need, for work or health reasons, to access or cross preferably pedestrian areas. Civil engineering and sustainable mobility solutions will enable this coexistence while designing environmental strategies. Some could be the adaptation of special lanes, selective passage systems or the underground of some section, among others.

When Ingartek designs sustainable mobility plans it takes into account factors such as those mentioned, thus facilitating urban accessibility for all alike. Our consultancy is formed by a professional team with experience and extensive knowledge of urban planning. In addition, we have a wide range of products to manage both public and private transport.