5 Most Accessible Cities for Wheelchair Users in The United States
When going on a vacation, wheelchair users may want to consider the accessibility of the city they are planning to visit. Wheelchairs can go to more places in the United States than ever, and these are the five most accessible cities for wheelchair users to adventure:
1. Seattle, Washington
Seattle, Washington, is one of the most wheelchair-friendly cities in the United States. Despite the steep parts of the city and constant rain, the city's public transportation system is very friendly. Seattle’s bus and light rail lines are wheelchair accessible, along with their taxi fleet, one of the biggest in the country.
There are plenty of things to do in Seattle that have wheelchair access. According to Apartment Therapy, Seattle has 915 accessible restaurants and 12 accessible attractions. If you travel via public transportation, you can visit attractions like the Space Needle, the Boeing Factory and Museum, and take a cruise on Puget Sound.
2. Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C., has been wheelchair accessible for a long time. The disabled community in Washington is very active and visible, so all three airports and the public transportation in the city are easy to get through. In addition, metro stations around the city have elevators for wheelchair users and give visitors access to the entire city.
Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority says, “All Metrorail stations and rail cars are accessible in Washington D.C. There are accessible priority parking spaces near the rail station entrance reserved for vehicles displaying DMV/MVA handicapped permits or license plates. Outside of Washington rail stations, there are directional signs to the station's accessible entrance and the accessible elevator entrance.”
Staying busy is easy in Washington, D.C.! Apartment Therapy states that Washington, D.C. has 788 accessible restaurants and 38 accessible tourist attractions. You can easily visit the nation's capital and sightsee Capitol Hill, the White House, Lincoln Memorial, and the National Air and Space Museum as a wheelchair user.
3. Portland, Oregon
Traveling around Portland, Oregon, is easy, thanks to wheelchair-accessible city buses, streetcars, MAX Light Rail, and The TriMet Lift service. These systems give visitors and residents plenty of options to get around but leave little room to see every corner of Portland, unlike Washington, D.C.
According to Apartment Therapy, Portland has 873 accessible restaurants but has 0 accessible well-known tourist attractions in the area. Even though there are not any accessible landmarks, you can still visit some great attractions Portland offers – museums, parks, and zoos. Harborwalk Trail features a flat and paved path that connects Portland's East End beach and South Portland's Bug Light Park for approximately 5.2 miles.
4. Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois, has accomplished a lot when trying to make its city’s transit system accessible. Now, visitors can access wheelchair-accessible train travel from the city’s two airports. Apartment Therapy states that there are 1,453 accessible restaurants to try in Chicago and over 30 accessible tourist attractions.
Suppose you're looking to head downtown to visit accessible attractions, like the Art Institute of Chicago and Willis Tower SkyDeck. In that case, you can use the elevated train network offered at most metro stations. To visit other places in Chicago, you can book a wheelchair taxi or take a bus that is fully accessible.
Think about the time of year you decide to travel to The Windy City because it lives up to its nickname. Winter is not the best time to visit, considering the weather in Chicago is very harsh, with strong winds and heavy snow. The best time to visit would be spring or summer when the weather is drier.
5. Orlando, Florida
Orlando, Florida, attracts millions of tourists annually and is wheelchair friendly. The main reason is that the area is home to a large older population, and the city pays attention to those people’s needs. Orlando's facilities and public transportation systems, the SunRail system and LYNX buses, are excellent for wheelchair users. The LYNX buses are even equipped with hydraulic lifts and restraining belts.
The city's accessibility is very beneficial for disabled visitors worldwide. Most hotels in the area offer a great choice of rooms to people with disabilities. In addition, the major amusement parks, Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando, and SeaWorld Orlando, offer wheelchair-accessible rides and attractions.
Before visiting Walt Disney World, there are several things wheelchair users should know. According to Trivago Magazine, “Walt Disney World's Disability Access Service allows guests in wheelchairs to approach a specific ride and schedule a return time comparable to the amount of wait time the ride had when they approached. This means that if you go to a ride with a 45-minute wait time, you and an allotted number of people from your party can simply come back after 45 minutes and ride.”
An accessible city like Orlando, Florida, is the perfect place for a family vacation. There are fun and accessible things to do on every corner for everyone! A city is considered truly wheelchair friendly when a person in a wheelchair can function, move around, and enjoy themselves without trouble. It is best for all sidewalks in parks and other public spaces to remove curbs to enable free movement. Public transportation, including buses and taxis, need accessibility along with hotels and airports for people to travel by air.
At StrongGo, we believe in developing a more accessible environment, and we do this by engineering and designing detectable warning dome tiles. Contact us today to learn more by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.