Published On: Sat, Dec 17th, 2016

Google Maps now records if a plcae is wheelchair accessible


“Can we get in a building?”

It competence not be a doubt we find yourself seeking frequently — though for a 3 million+ wheelchair users in a U.S., it’s a doubt that has to be considered. And starting now, it’s one that Google Maps is perplexing to assistance answer.

“Wheelchair permitted entrance” will now be remarkable in a location’s “Amenities” territory wherever Google is done wakeful of a accessibility.

Accessibility info won’t uncover for all locations — that information simply doesn’t exist yet. Organizations like Wheelmap have been building adult a dataset for a while, though a permitted information doesn’t sweeping vital cities, most reduction a world. Google is branch to internal guides (users who minister plcae info in sell for early entrance to new features) to grow their information set, though it’ll take a while.

The bid is led by Googler Rio Asaka as partial of his “20% time” (Google’s process that has a employees spend one day a week tinkering on side-projects). BI has an talk with him here.

“But wait!” we say. “Aren’t all buildings ostensible to be wheelchair accessible?”

While a Americans with Disabilities Act requires new buildings to comment for wheelchair access, a mandate for structures built before to a act’s signing in 1993 are reduction despotic (Heads up: PDF link). In vital cities where many of a buildings were built decades ago, wheelchair entrance is anything though a given.

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