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Public Transit Accessibility: Blind Passengers Speak Out.

  • Author(s): Mirzaei, F
  • Manduchi, R
  • Kurniawan, S
  • Editor(s): Miesenberger, K
  • Kouroupetroglou, G
  • et al.
Abstract

Riding public transit can be confusing for everyone, especially in an unfamiliar environment. One needs to figure out which transportation lines to take to reach a destination, when and where to catch a bus or a train, when to exit, and how to negotiate transfers. For those with sensorial or cognitive disa- bilities, these problems become even more daunting. Several technological ap- proaches have been proposed to facilitate use of public transit for everyone. For any assistive technology to be successful, though, it is imperative that it is de- veloped from the ground up with a clear understanding of the intended users’ needs and requirements, and possibly with a direct participation of these users throughout the project lifecycle. In this study, we conduct a focus group with blind participants, designed to highlight the main issues, problems, and limitations with the current transit system in our local area as well as the perception of the participants our proposed RouteMe2 technology. We found two core categories of issues faced by blind travelers: (1) spatial/location awareness, and (2) temporal/ time awareness. Configurability and accessibility were the most desired features requested for a new transit information app.

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