VANESSA HARRIS: Hi, it’s Vanessa Harris with Fun4theDisabled, bringing you the third installment of our Universal Design series. In the previous two installments, I talked with Kristine France Zuniga and Andrea Legarreta, two accessibility experts with the Chile based Ciudad Accesible Corporaciónon universal design principles in theory and in practice some case studies. In this episode, we get to the Streets of Iquique and talk even more specifically about critiques of the so-called Inclusive City.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: First I want to say that this is an example of the, the work we usually do. This is a work that we go without people call us. Just for, in this case, we went to Iquique attracted by its Inclusive Iquique title, that is a program they have. We went there because we, like the Corporación we want to know how well it’s going on. That is the truth. But this kind of works also the equipo– how you say– team of the Corporación,the enterprise and/or a municipality contract Ciudad Accesible to do that kind of works. OK.
VANESSA HARRIS: So, what is this?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: That is, with the other picture, this and this, a view of this beautiful chair space done in Iquique.
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Previously this was a street, really a street with vehicles and they are transforming in a sidewalk all of this.
VANESSA HARRIS: So, now on you can no longer drive on the street. It’s only for pedestrians, the people with wheelchairs and walkers and things like that.
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Yes, yes, yes.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Only car can cross, but not go on it. For one side has a sidewalks, that seems to be the original one and they make a shared space. But the pedestrian circulation was obstaculizedbecause a lot of people drop a commercial unit in the street.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. And then people couldn’t navigate it because it was too narrow and there were obstacles in the way. Is that what you’re saying?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes. Yes. Because remember, the accessible route. You have to maintain a logical route that people can move through them and especially blind people and those that cannot overpassobstacles.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. So, this is one of those places where you’d see stickers?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Yes, yes.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. So what about this one?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: We can put some English stickers.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. Yeah.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: This is the same. this is a good view of the shared space, it’s the first zone of that imagen (image).
VANESSA HARRIS: It’s very accessible there.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes, it’s very right here. But if you going on straight, after going to see this, that can be very good for moving that zone. But this not. You have a very good space here and suddenly you front with that kind of a contraption that are not permanent because they start in some days and some day not. People is through to the public space, the tables and all of kind of commerce and don’t let people go across the wild side or in this case of the street.
VANESSA HARRIS: So, what is this?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: This is to show what important is the maintenance for the accessibility. What is important is the maintenance.
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. So, I can see they need to do some work here on this street.
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Yeah. We all say that maybe you make changes in the infrastructure, but maybe you don’t have a protocol to make the management of this accessibility, to say this maintenance.
VANESSA HARRIS: Right, right, right. Alright, what about this one?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: This is a stop bus, but is like a very common mobility in our country that are like like cabs. Cabs? No taxi. How you call taxi?
VANESSA HARRIS: Taxi cabs. Yeah.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yeah. There in that city is very used the way of cars like taxis but the people is inside of there more than one, two, three, four and five different people and go this car for the street and they start drop the people in different places. That is like a bus but are in small size.
VANESSA HARRIS: So, is it like a shared ride?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes. It’s like yes, but it’s like a kind of public share car.
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. So, like we have that, here in smaller cars, they’re called paratransit. So, people with different accessibility issues, they get rides in public transportation and smaller cars and buses. And they picked him up at their homes, but they pick them up and they may not drop them off immediately. They may make a detour and pick up someone else with a disability and that’s the way they have itset up here.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes. But this this kind of cars is not for disability person.
VANESSA HARRIS: Oh, OK.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: And in opposite, they cannot carry disabled people. Because. They’re not adapted and are not prepared. So, this is a stop of that that don’t have any accessible about that and the taxis even, no there is none.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK and how about here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: That is the car park. But there’s no any park for disabled people.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK.
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Yes. In this picture we can see bollard, a small bollard. That was a problem around the world. When the bollards are so so small to identify.
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. So, it’s not accessible on that street?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Not so much.
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. Yeah. Alright. And this is a ramp?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Yes, the ramp.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes. That is a very nice ramp that goes to nivel (level), some change of nivel (level). It is very good that…
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: I think this ramp is to conduct you to a historic building. No?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: It is put there because there are a lot of buildings there and it is a zone that is higher than the street. So, because you go along that and you get the same level at the other street. There were a kind of desnivel, different level.
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Yeah. Different level.
VANESSA HARRIS: Really?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yeah.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. OK. And what is going on here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: That is a school and they put during the day that ramp and when the building is closed, they take it. So, we put in the analysise that there is needed a permanent solution. A nice, permanent solution. Yes.
VANESSAHARRIS: Excellent. OK. So I’m gonna go to the other one. So what about here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: This one, a pedestrian cross that gets to the beach that is not accessible. It has here a step.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. So, all those are poles and people have to walk through there and they’re not wide enough to get your wheelchair through?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Yes. Yes.
VANESSA HARRIS: Wow. OK. And what about this?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: The direction of the crossway walk is not correct. They conduct to the center of the street for blind people is terribly dangerous.
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. Yeah. Alright. So, what about here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Well, this is a very bad practice. Here is a cross. Yeah…
VANESSA HARRIS: And someone is parked there. Somebody’s parked right in the crosswalk?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Yes.
VANESSA HARRIS: Oh, my goodness.
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Exactly. It’s an attitudinal barrier.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: The taxi stop in this way to drop the passenger. This is very critical because here I observe a lot of time that here drop people in these fences. The people have to use this cross. And the visibility for the other cars that were back, are in disturb the visibility of crossing people. That is a very danger point.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. Wow.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: It is not recommended. Never put a bus stop or whatever stop before a pedestrian crosswalk, because all the objects that stop here will get hit. Will take visibility from the person that is crossing. That is a very bad practice.
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. OK. That’s dangerous. And what about here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Here is a bus stop that is not connecting with the sidewalk near the beach. Yeah, we have just this border disconnect.
VANESSA HARRIS: What about here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: This is the exclusive bicycle road. And in most areas, you have to cross this to get to the beach. You come from the street here and you have to, in some cases they are not has the mark the path. They they put here a cycle route, exclusive cycle route near the beach. That is very strange. Is very awful that pedestrian cannot walk for the side of a beach. It’s very strange that.
VANESSA HARRIS: So, a bicycle route is just for bicycles and not for wheelchairs or walkers.
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: No, no, It’s exclusive for bicycles.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. Wow. What about here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Well, here, this is a park, an accessible park here at the end that is in the earth. There are not demarked only have that signal. And the the problem is that here is the cycle cross that go to the beach and this person that is go out for the car only have two alternatives: go for the sand, that you cannot if you are a wheelchair user, and the other is to go for the exclusive bicycle road.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. So, you don’t have a choice. You either do one or the other. You can’t do both.
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Yes.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: But those of both are not accessible. So…
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. OK.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Here you have, for example, a pedestrian road that you have to cross, again, you have to cross grass to get to the pedestrian road. But here you don’t have a connection. It is not connected. It’s weird.
VANESSA HARRIS: What about here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Here you have a connecting, but here, they’re connecting a pedestrian road, the cycle again. And you get to the beach. But you have steps.
VANESSA HARRIS: Steps over here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Only steps, to go through.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. And here, too, you have steps.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes. This is very large and have steps in every parts, but none of those parts have a ramp, for example. And these steps have not, how you say pasamano, rail?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Handrail.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Handrail for adult people, for example.
VANESSA HARRIS: Handrail.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Handrail? Yes.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. OK. So what is this?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: In this imagen (image) you can see that if there is a ramp in that way these both route are not communicated, it’s accessible but they’re not connected with each other to get to the destiny you want. There is fail in that way.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK, what about this one?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Accessibility chain! Chain.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Here is the beach and in the end has a ramp. If you take this way you cannot go that way.
VANESSA HARRIS: That’s cause there’s steps.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes. Yes. Because at the end has a ramp but are not connected, these are not connected. These road are not connected with this and with that. No. Well, this is an entrance of a bathroom that, because there is a ramp, you think oh have accessibility. But no, they don’t have. They only have the ramp to get there.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. And this is inside that bathroom?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Inside. Also this is inside that you see how small this is and all kinds of things put in here. So, it’s only the ramp and the ramp is questionable.
VANESSA HARRIS: Alright. And what about this?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: This is the inside of the the bathroom. You get there and get there.
VANESSA HARRIS: And then you get stuck in there with all these obstacles in there.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes. Yes.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. OK.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: And then you have, I want to cry. You have a seat here for the people to rest. But you have a level, a bad level here, and you have another level here. Level? No, You say this…
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Level. Level.
VANESSA HARRIS: Level. It’s not level?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes. Yes. to get there. It’s very, needs a sticker there.
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. OK. This is a seat?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes.
VANESSA HARRIS: And these are steps?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes, It’s a kind of steps. It’s a hole.
VANESSA HARRIS: Goodness!
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes, it’s a hole here. Hard to get there. No, it’s very…
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. OK. What about here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Here is a one road that is connecting this kind of shower that are in the beach. They are disconnected from the path and here has a ramp, a very no good ramp and this is not usable for disabled people.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. And here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: This is another activity in the beach that there’s no place for a wheelchair. For example, a person with a wheelchair cannot use this. That is a how you call?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: Chess table.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Yes, chess table.
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. OK. What about here?
ANDREA LEGARRETA: This is showing that this kind of vegetation can be straight cut. A blind people is walking there will be absorbed…
VANESSA HARRIS: Will walk right into that bush.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: Absorbed by the tree.
VANESSA HARRIS: Yeah. Yeah. OK.
ANDREA LEGARRETA: The pedestrian is the first priority ever.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. OK. Both of you can answer this at the same time, but just not on top of each other. Can you tell me about some recent successes?
KRISTINE FRANCE ZUNIGA: I think that we have really successful was the rule that we have now, we think. We are working 20 years on this matter and really I see that we have made a change in our government, in our part of the the profession and then see in all of Latin America, our law is really good. They have to be improved, sure but it’s good and is mandatory. If you don’t make the change… This is the other point. I think this is a successful step, that all this the rule says that all the existing building must modify. This is really hard to the people, to the property. But some is changing here I think and I think that we have small drops inside this change.
VANESSA HARRIS: OK, so you see progress?
VANESSA HARRIS: OK. Thanks for watching this last installment of our series. I hope in watching you learned a lot about universal design principles and are inspired to take a more critical eye to your own city infrastructure– Observing everywhere, how it includes or excludes. It is up to everyone to participate in the making of a more inclusive world. Thanks for watching. Bye bye. This is Vanessa Harris with Fun4theDisabled.