13 Aug Paris is the Worst City for ADA Tourists
While I happen to think that Paris is one of the BEST cities on earth, I have to admit that anyone with a disability is up a creek without a paddle. Even able-bodied tourists can have a difficult time with luggage and stairs in the Métro and public buildings.
Think about it…cobblestone streets, no ramped sidewalks, narrow sidewalks, curbs, and so many, many buildings without elevators or ramps to even approach the first floor. I always wondered what happens to the elderly when they can no longer make the trek up their stairs to their apartments? How do they carry groceries up two, three, four, five flights of stairs?
Last night I was at an event in the U.S. as part of a panel as part of the New England Interactive Marketers group and one of the guests was in a wheel chair. While the front door was wide enough to fit his vehicle through easily, the room where the action was taking place was on a split level with a six inch step to negotiate. With some help from a friend he was able to make the incline. We got to talking about his time in Paris and it made me stop to think. Have I ever seen someone wheeling themselves or others in a wheelchair in Paris? Come to think of it, NO!