News / Edmonton

Some new Edmonton EPark pay machines inaccessible

People using wheelchairs were unable to reach some of the city's new parking pay machines.

These new EPark machines installed near the Hys Centre have been placed on concrete pads, making them inaccessible for people using wheelchairs.

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These new EPark machines installed near the Hys Centre have been placed on concrete pads, making them inaccessible for people using wheelchairs.

An employee of an organization for people with disabilities says people who use wheelchairs can’t use the new EPark pay machines installed outside his office.

“The city, in theory, is trying to be proactive in making [the city] more accessible with the Age Friendly initiative so I’m quite surprised that they’re not built to that standard,” said Ross Norton, the community development coordinator with Spinal Cord Injury Alberta.

About 10 days ago, Norton noticed three new machines on 110 Avenue between 101 and 102 Street, about half a block from the Hys Centre, where the SCIA’s offices are located.

All were installed on top of concrete pads, making them unreachable for someone in a wheelchair.

While there is disabled parking, Norton said it’s often full. “But that really shouldn’t matter — every one of those pay meters should be accessible everywhere.”

Norton said there people with mobility issues are often looking for parking in the area. His office is there and the Royal Alexandra and Glenrose hospitals are nearby.

“It probably is a misunderstanding between the city and the contractor but the city still needs to make sure they’re installed properly.”

Brian Murphy, general supervisor of parking management with the city, said the concrete pads were “”overlooked,” adding, “in very short order we’ll make sure we fix it.”

“Going through this process we realize that we will need to make some adjustments, so certainly in this case we will be making the necessary adjustments,” he said, adding they could be fixed as early as this week.

The city will look at options like putting the machine on the sidewalk so it’s accessible.

The concrete pad was a temporary measure used at some sites and permanent pads will be poured in the spring.

The city is currently replacing 3,300 meters with about 400 EPark machines.

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