Tel Aviv Rolls Toward Accessibility with New Adaptive Cycling Center


Athletes with physical disabilities who use adaptive bicycles like hand cycles will now be able to utilize dozens of kilometers of bike paths in the Yarkon Park, after a multi-million shekel Accessible Cycling Complex was dedicated on Thursday at the National Sport Center in Tel Aviv.

The Tourism Ministry and the Tel Aviv municipality funded the NIS 5.7 million project to create the complex, as well as create improved access to the park’s bike paths by ensuring that there are no curbs or steps without ramps across the entire park.

Tourism Minister Yariv Levin (Likud) said the initiative is part of a two-pronged vision for the Tourism Ministry: improving accessibility, and attracting tourists from the adaptive athletic community around the world.

“We must make all tourism sites accessible, not just because it is a [legal] requirement, but also because Israel has specific and special needs in this regard,” he said.

Improving accessibility refers to both physical disabilities as well as “sensory impairments” such as deafness or blindness. The Tourism Ministry has also made five “accessibility points” — areas like picnic spots or short trails that enable visitors to access viewpoints or other highlights — in nature reserves across the country, such as the Besor Stream, the Hula Lake, and the Snir Stream, among others.

 

 

MELANIE LIDMAN, THE TIMES OF ISRAEL

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