More wheelchair ramps coming to Calgary neighbourhoods

CTV News spoke to Llano Gorman last June when he said he had reached out to the city and area councillor to request more wheelchair ramps be added to sidewalks. One year later, he said nothing has changed, until the city announced Thursday plans to install 400 wheelchair ramps in 2021, including 13 in the Glendale Meadows neighbourhood where Gorman lives.

The City of Calgary hopes to install a total of 400 wheelchair ramps by the end of the year, a spokesperson confirmed to CTV. The city said 268 ramps were installed in 2020.

The municipal government will be installing 13 wheelchair ramps in the Glendale Meadows neighbourhood, where Llano Gorman lives.

Gorman uses an electric scooter, and says not all of the sidewalks in his neighbourhood are accessible. “I still cannot get from here to my pharmacy or to the place that I go grocery shopping,” he told CTV.

Gorman frequently finds himself forced to ride on the road.

Before Thursday’s announcement, Gorman and the Glenbrook Community Association had been requesting that the city install ramps in his neighbourhood for over a year.

“What we have in the community right now is a very disjointed, disconnected network for anyone that needs to use ramps,” said Murray Ost, president of the Glenbrook Community Association.

The proposed 13 ramps will help to improve mobility in the southwest Calgary neighbourhood, a significant increase from the one ramp installed in Glendale Meadows in 2020.

Applications for a wheelchair ramp can be made by calling 311. The city will inspect each requested site, and ramps will be installed based on need and budget availability.

According to city officials, the annual budget for wheelchair ramp installations is $1 million.