The winner of the HealthHacks Smart Cities Challenge is promoting accessibility for those using wheelchairs in Edmonton.
Martin Ferguson who is a professor at the faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine within the University of Alberta created the Click N’ Push with his team. The Click N’ Push is an app that demonstrates how hard it is for people in wheelchairs within the city.
The app uses something called redline which are force sensors in order to be able to measure the effort that is needed to travel within different parts of the city. This data is collected and then is subjected to a set region or place and is given the ranking of varying difficulty from 0-10.
The goal is for the city to use this data and to use it as a planning tool for future purposes. Keeping in mind people with disabilities and how to better aid them in their day to day travels.
The testing period of the the app revealed that it is much harder than it seems for people with disabilities to navigate the streets. The goal is to promote accessibility.
The Click N’ Push team doesn’t just work with the city but also with hotels, conference centres and larger facilities. An example could be West Edmonton Mall.
We need to keep people with disabilities in mind when designing and building infrastructure and realize how hard it is for them to navigate places. The Click N’ Push app will allow for more open minds and create a bigger conversation on accessibility.