Innovative technology company Ariadna Servicios Informáticos presented the Able to Include project to an audience of stakeholders at the ‘Ciudades que caminan’ (Walking Cities) Congress in Pontevedra in October 2014. The project was introduced to academics, organisations from the intellectual disabilities field and self-advocates.
The Ciudades que caminan Network is an international association open to all municipalities and government agencies interested in improving the situation of pedestrians through the implementation and sharing of initiatives focusing on the improvement of universal accessibility, road safety and the environment.
The more specific focus of this congress was the Mobility Pilot of Able to Include. This usage scenario will be applied in the pilot in Flanders (Belgium and the United Kingdom) and will be focused on the mobility of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities through the network of public transport.
The pilot will make use of VPAD (Virtual Places Audio Data) technology developed by Belgian partner Thomas More Kempen. It will also feature GIS technology, a system enabling decision-making on geographic location, which will be introduced by partner group TEAMNET from Romania.
Ariadna has considerable experience creating new technologies which improve accessibility for people with disabilities in a city environment. One of these technologies saw the creation of an app which adds intelligence to routes depending on the user’s profile, such as architectural barriers which would impinge on access for people with certain disabilities. The group has also developed games that allow children with Down syndrome to move independently throughout a city.
The congress placed particular importance on walking the context of new models of sustainable urban mobility. Identifying that each citizen requires pedestrian access, Ciudades que caminan emphasized how any improvements in travel on foot could directly result in increased social cohesion and more equal opportunities when wanting to enjoy public spaces.