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AEBC Ottawa Chapter meeting with City of Ottawa on transportation issues

On Dec 7 2015, the Ottawa Chapter of the AEBC hosted a very informative and successful first meeting with the city. 3 Representatives of the city (Tom, Randy, and Phil), joined a group of approximately 20 community members along with the Chapter Board to review and explore topics of mutual interest. Unfortunately, representation was not present from the Light Rail Transport (LRT) or customer Service areas and it is hoped this will be rectified in the summer 2016 meeting.

Discussions included bus announcements, universal design, the current LRT construction, installation of pulsing and audible lights, roundabouts, and the increased presence of bike lanes within the CITY. Points of particular interest included the current contracting clauses and requirements within the city procurement processes. Current process, online certification with interpretation purely at the discretion of the contractor was deemed insufficient. The refreshing of current lights at end of life with audible and pulsing to the amount of $300K per year was welcome news. The introduction of curb height regulations, positioning of audible lights in proximity to the curb, and the increased recognition of the need for universal design, were all considered very positive trends.

Anticipated items include more information on the web site accessibility/ease of use, tech in mobility, outcomes of studies such as the key fob solution for audible light activation, the external bus announcements just to name a few. The LRT and round abouts are hot items that impact daily travel from a construction verses obstruction perspective as well as future development. There is a strong appetite for universal design, and a strong sensce of collaboration between the key groups.

This first meeting was well attended and positive. Collaboration is key to an improved and safer traveling experience for the community . It is recognised that while more work is needed, the first steps have been taken and the Chapter looks forward to facilitating follow up meetings

Disclaimer:

This blog is curated by the AEBC, but welcomes contributions from members and non-members alike. The thoughts, views, and opinions expressed in the Blind Canadians Blog are those of the contributing authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the AEBC, its members, or any of its donors and partners.
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