Accessible Infrastructure

When creating active transportation projects, it's imperative they are accessible to everyone, especially community members who are disabled. This page serves as a starting point for those interested in learning how to create projects that serve everyone in the community. 

Just starting to learn about accessibility?

Upcoming and Past Events

  • May 15, 2024 (webinar): Engaging and Including Students with Disabilities in Safe Routes Programs: This session from the Safe Routes Partnership will "explore strategies and best practices for engaging and including students with disabilities in Safe Routes programs. Our expert panelists will share how they lead and participate in inclusive programs, how they partner with local champions, and how other Safe Routes practitioners can make their programs more inclusive and accessible." Learn more and register.
  • November 1, 2023 (webinar): What's Next for PROWAG? Association of Pedestrian & Bicycle Professionals. Recently, the U.S. Access Board issued a final rule on the Public Right-of-Way Accessibility Guidelines (PROWAG). This session will address the requirements in these guidelines, specifically highlighting changes from the proposed draft that was published in 2013. Presenters will review various provisions in PROWAG, including the minimum technical requirements for various spaces and elements in the public right-of-way, such as pedestrian access routes, pedestrian signals, curb ramps and blended transitions, roundabouts, transit stops, and parking spaces.  Implementation of the new rule will also be discussed. Watch the recording.
  • October 25, 2023 (webinar): Complete Streets Power Hour - Advocates Spotlight. Smart Growth America. This series of virtual webinars explores advocacy strategies to advance Complete Streets in your community. In this webinar, state and local advocates are invited to join to talk about the first element of the Complete Streets Policies Framework: establish a commitment and vision. This discussion will be led by Anna Zivarts (Director, Disability Mobility Initiative) and participants will have the opportunity to learn more about the tools and policies advocates need to succeed. Watch the recording.
  • October 5, 2023 (webinar): Accessibility Guidelines for Pedestrian Facilities in the Public Right-of-Way. Great Lakes ADA Center. Pedestrians with disabilities throughout the United States continue to face major challenges in travel because many sidewalks, crosswalks, and other pedestrian facilities are inaccessible. Recently, the U.S. Access Board issued a final rule on the Public Right-of-Way Accessibility Guidelines (PROWAG). This session will address the requirements in these guidelines, specifically highlighting changes from the proposed draft that was published in 2013. Presenters from the Access Board will review many aspects of PROWAG, including how federal, state, and local government agencies can make their pedestrian facilities, such as sidewalks, crosswalks, shared-use paths, and on-street parking, accessible to people with disabilities. Presenters will also cover the minimum technical requirements for various spaces and elements in the public right-of-way, such as pedestrian access routes, pedestrian signals, curb ramps and blended transitions, detectable warning surfaces, transit stops, and street furniture. This webinar will include video remote interpreting (VRI) and real-time captioning. Watch the recording of the webinar.

Research and Articles

Toolkits and Guides

  • Public Right-of-Way Accessibility Guidelines (PROWAG) (U.S. Access Board, updated August 2023)The Access Board has published new guidelines under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Architectural Barriers Act (ABA) that address access to sidewalks and streets, crosswalks, curb ramps, pedestrian signals, on-street parking, and other components of public right-of-way. These guidelines also review shared-use paths, which are designed primarily for use by bicyclists and pedestrians for transportation and recreation purposes.
  • Mobility Toolkit (City of Long Beach)This Mobility Toolkit is a comprehensive list of best-practice roadway treatments that address a variety of transportation challenges. The toolkit is categorized into bicycle, walkability, traffic calming, and traffic control treatments. However, many of these treatments benefit a variety of road users. Please note that some of these treatments - like continental crosswalks - are used throughout Long Beach, while others - such as raised crosswalks - have not yet been implemented but may be considered in the future.
  • Designing for Small Things With Wheels (NACTO, 2023): This design guide explores the strategies planners and engineers are employing to ensure that people riding the evolving variety of "small things with wheels" like pedal bikes, e-bikes, e-scooters, cargo bikes, sit-down scooters and powered skateboards can comfortably and safely can comfortably ride in urban bikeways. It provides an overview of design considerations and new approaches like understanding bikeable width for riding space and passing space, designing space for people to wait at intersections, allowing turning maneuvers and lane shifts at appropriate operating speeds, and providing smooth surfaces for devices with small wheels.
  • Transportation Equity Toolkit (University of South Florida’s (USF) Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR), 2022): The Transportation Equity Toolkit is a resource for MPOs, transportation agencies, and communities as they work to advance equity in traditionally underserved communities and more equitably distribute transportation investments. The toolkit was developed by a research team at the Center for Urban Transportation Research at the University of South Florida with funding from the Center for Transportation Equity, Decisions, and Dollars at the University of Texas at Arlington. It provides a framework for a transportation equity needs assessment and an equity-based project identification and prioritization process.
  • A Capitol Region Guide to Community Quick-Builds for Complete Streets (Capitol Region Council of Governments, 2020): This guide provides an introduction to the Quick Build methodology, an overview of typologies and interventions, and guidance on how to get started with project planning.
  • Accessible Shared Streets: Notable Practices and Considerations for Pedestrians with Vision Disabilities (FHWA, 2017): This document reviews notable practices and considerations for accommodating pedestrians with vision disabilities on shared streets. It focuses on streets where pedestrians, bicyclists, and motor vehicles are intended to mix in the same space.
  • Tactical Urbanist's Guide and Materials (The Streets Plan Collaborative, 2016): This website is intended to serve as a hub of information about Tactical Urbanism, focusing on the information from the Tactical Urbanist's Guide to Materials and Design and highlighting additional resources by Street Plans and other partners.
  • Quick Build for Better Streets - A New Project Delivery Model for U.S. Cities (People for Bikes, 2016)This report draws on the experiences of Austin, Chicago, Denver, Memphis, New York, Pittsburgh, San Francisco, and Seattle to create a general guide for adding this exciting, effective new form of project delivery into your city’s toolbox.

Case Studies/Examples

  • Residential Traffic Calming Program, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA): The SFMTA’s Traffic Calming Program is a resident-driven, application-based program to address mid-block speeding on residential streets in San Francisco. The program seeks to enhance neighborhood livability by reducing the adverse impacts of vehicular traffic on residential streets and creating safer and more comfortable streets for people walking, bicycling, and driving alike. Program resources include Vision Zero Quick-Build Projects, Safe Streets Evaluation Program, Slow Streets Program and more.
  • LCTI: South Los Angeles Universal Basic Mobility Pilot Program (Los Angeles Department of Transportation, June 2021-March 2025): The South Los Angeles Universal Basic Mobility Pilot Program expands fare payment subsidies, integrates fare payment across existing and new transportation options, introduces new shared mobility options for residents and workers, and expands electrification to advance Universal Basic Mobility for South LA residents. The project components include a mobility wallet and transportation subsidy pilot; an e-bike lending library; a year-long, on-demand electric shuttle pilot; an expansion of the BlueLA electric carshare program into South LA; new public charging infrastructure; CicLAvia events in South LA; stakeholder outreach and engagement activities led by SLATE-Z; quick-build active transportation demonstration projects; and bike and pedestrian improvements on a future Rail-to-Rail active transportation corridor. The program focuses on serving the most vulnerable users, including youth, older adults, women, and people who are disabled or homeless.
  • Universal Design Elements (NACTO): This webpage provides an overview of universal design features that allow any street user to comfortably and conveniently reach every transit stop.
  • Disability, Transportation, and Accessibility: New Trends and Longstanding Challenges in the US (Prashanth S. Venkataram, UC Davis ITS, 2023): ITS Davis postdoctoral researcher Prashanth S. Venkataram presented Disability, Transportation, and Accessibility: New Trends and Longstanding Challenges in the US at the UC Berkeley ITS Transportation Seminar on Feb. 24, 2023. Watch the video recording of the event to learn more about his research to understand the transportation challenges facing people with disabilities and how disability may affect the choices & desires that people have for transportation.
  • Enhancing Mobility, Access and Safety for Pedestrians (Part 1 and Part 2) (FHWA, PBIC, 2020)Communities across the country are working to integrate the needs of pedestrians into transportation decision-making. As agencies shift toward adopting roadway design practices and safety countermeasures that enhance the pedestrian experience, attention should also be given to the mobility and accessibility needs of pedestrians of all ages and abilities. In particular, pedestrians who are blind or have low vision have different needs to be considered when deploying safety countermeasures. In this webinar series, we will showcase strategies that can be used to enhance accessibility at crossing locations and along separated bicycle lanes at sidewalk level. Our panelists will share their research and the unique perspective of pedestrians who are not always considered when making transportation decisions.