jeweeber | Indy Week

jeweeber 
Member since Sep 8, 2008


Downtown Historic Oakwood

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Re: “Raleigh's downtown revival

Infuriatingly "conventional" the new convention center most definitely is! An edifice designed by walking people for walking people...almost, only! Upon entering the building in my scooter, I searched for "way finding signage" directing me to elevators that would bring me to the lower levels with as much ease as walking people had in finding their way between the buildings levels. In the language of the ADA that means "equal opportunity" to access the building with the same ease as walking people. But I saw no walking person having to wait 30 minutes to go down the stairs or escalators like the people with baby strollers and wheelchair users trying to use the one visible and very small elevator provided for those tax payers to use in getting between floors. Such a paucity of accommodations that would enable movement of equal ease for all citizen users of this space creates a situation of pitting one group against each other in perceiving their right or need to this artificially limited conveyance.

Once on the elevator, there is no signage to tell what level you need to go to, so you ride the rail until you figure it out - primarily from the glaring faces waiting for the elevator you are still on. Then there is the matter of "how do I get to the exhibition hall?" once one gets off that elevator on the first lower level. Oh yeah, you have to ask around and are told to go get in another line and wait to get down to the exhibition all. Sure doesn't feel like "equal opportunity" to access this public facility paid for by m y tax dollar.

Once in the exhibition hall, I began to freak out because its 2 floors under ground and there is no signage telling me about fire exits for wheelchair users...they all go to stairwells that have no egress to the outside (i rolled all around the building looking for such egress) and there are no signs that tell me where the "areas of rescue" are for wheelchair users to go to, that would have a means to signal a fireman that one needed assistance.

My conversations with the conveniently located firemen and fire marshall did nothing to alleviate my concern about a workable plan to get wheelchairs users out of that space. But I know where I'm going...I'm going out the door the fire truck came in!!

Posted by jeweeber on 09/08/2008 at 4:28 PM

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