Wheelchair Accessibility to Public Buildings in IstanbulBy Evcil, A. Nilay; Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology, Vol. 4, No. 2, pp. 76-85
Publication Date: March 2009
Study explored the accessibility and architectural barriers to wheelchair users of public buildings in the Central Business District (CBD) of Istanbul, Turkey. For the study, 26 public buildings in the Istanbul CBD were evaluated using a questionnaire to collect data from direct observation and measurement including (1) building location and function such as museum, hotel, post office, restaurant, or theatre; (2) proximity to public transportation; (3) building access, including ramps and sidewalk width; (4) accessibility of entrances; (5) vertical accessibility inside building including elevators and ramps; (6) interior accessibility including level traffic areas and accessible counter dimensions; (7) accessibility of restrooms; (8) existence and accessibility of public phones; and (9) accessibility of car parking areas. The major accessibility barrier to the public buildings was found to be public transportation, which had a mean compliance of 25 percent. Building entrances were found to be the most compliant with accessibility guidelines, with 25 of the buildings having at least one accessible door. The mean percentage compliance for vertical accessibility was 59 percent, while mean compliance for accessibility inside the buildings was 52 percent. The accessibility of restrooms garnered a mean score of 53 percent. While public phones were provided in 21 of the buildings, wheelchair accessible phones were found in only 7 of the sites. Eleven of the buildings surveyed did not provide parking, and of the remaining 15 sites, 60 percent provided disabled parking spaces. The study concludes that wheelchair users face numerous accessibility problems in the public buildings of the Istanbul CBD. Recommendations for improving access in this area are discussed.
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Limited (Website:http://taylorandfrancis.org)
International Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (Web Site: http://www.isprm.org )