The Swedish city of Borås has been awarded the 2014 European Access City Award, recognising its commitment to accessibility for people with disabilities and senior citizens.
The award acknowledges cities for their efforts to remove barriers in key aspects of everyday life. It covers four key areas of accessibility: the built environment and public spaces; transport and related infrastructure; information and communication technologies (ICTs); and public facilities and services.
‘Job creation and accessibility are top priority for the European Commission and I am personally committed to taking action in these areas. I would like to congratulate Borås for leading the way in making life more accessible for all,’ said Marianne Thyssen, European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility.
As part of the largest accessibility renovation project in Sweden, the library, theatre, art gallery and cultural centre have been made accessible inside and out with the addition of ramps, rails and sensory guides for people with visual impairments. Transport for people with reduced mobility is readily available.
The City of Borås is also working with private businesses including shops and restaurants, making their data public on an accessibility database.
Importantly, Borås is extremely willing to share its experience as an accessible city internationally.