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29 May 2017
Disability advocacy group CCS Disability Action and Waipa District Council staff are continuing to jointly audit the district to help improve access for people with disabilities.
Meetings have already been held for Pirongia and Kihikihi. Further meetings will be held at Cambridge and Te Awamutu next month.
The audit looks at how footpaths, road crossings, intersections, pedestrian crossings and mobility parking spaces, as well as access points into some reserves and community facilities can be made more accessible.
Council’s road maintenance team leader Cedric Crow said feedback from interested groups and individuals, either face-to-face or online, means real users are being heard.
“Talking to people face-to-face, plus the physical audit by CCS Disability Action means we are building up a detailed picture on what’s currently right and what needs further developing,” Crow said.
“We’ve had a lot of comment about issues like making pedestrian crossings safer, uneven footpaths and lots of feedback on disability parking spaces and kerbs,” he said.
“It’s hugely valuable and means that, alongside CCS Disability Action, we’ll be able to target the funds we have available to do the work that’s most important and beneficial for users.”
Crow said that while all council and private infrastructure is built to correct standards, over the years those standards have changed. Given that, he says there are no doubt some historical issues that need addressing.
“The audit and feedback from users will flush those out,” he said.
“Given some of the infrastructure is older, there’s definitely improvements that can be made so it’s a case of prioritising the $300,000 we have available specifically for this area.”
“If we find through the audit and feedback that considerably more money is needed, that’s something Council would have to weigh up and consider when setting its budgets.
A community meeting will be held in Cambridge on Tuesday 4 July at Council offices in Wilson Street. The Te Awamutu meeting will be on Wednesday 5 July at the Te Awamutu Library community room. Both meetings go from 10am – 12 noon.
For those who cannot make the meeting but still wish to offer feedback, feedback can be provided on line at www.waipadc.govt.nz/haveyoursay
For more information, contact: Amber Diprose 027 404 0836