Accessible Parks Canada
Making National Parks In Canada Accessible
The Accessible Parks Canada project is an interdisciplinary research project being conducted by the Engineering Health Lab (part of The KITE Research Institute) and affiliated researchers. Our goal is to revise guidelines for making Canada’s national parks more accessible. Our research is supported by funding from Accessibility Standards Canada.
National parks are becoming more accessible every year, but we are far from accomplishing true park accessibility for all. From our experience and consultations, we have identified key areas which require further exploration. We will be conducting research in these areas in the upcoming months. Stay tuned!
One of the main deliverables of this project is a matrix of accessibility solutions. This table will be populated with solutions and design standards to improve accessibility for individuals with disabilities that want to visit national parks and participate in activities there. A snapshot of what we are envisioning can be seen on the right.
A number of accessibility devices exist today that improve accessibility for individuals with disabilities and their caregivers. We have highlighted some of them below. As our research progresses, we will continue to add more devices to this page.
Want to learn more about accessibility in outdoor recreational spaces? Check out our blog where we discuss different topics, such as unique accessible adaptions.
Canada’s national parks are a source of pride for Canadians and are an integral part of our identity. These parks provide enjoyment to more than 16 million visitors each year, yet there has been a surprising lack of focus on making these parks accessible for individuals with disabilities.
One in five Canadians over the age of 15 and one in twenty children under the age of 15 have a disability. The Accessible Canada act requires that our national parks become accessible to these individuals and their caregivers by 2040.
Our long term vision is to ensure individuals with disabilities and their caregivers are able to participate in all activities offered at Canada’s national parks.
The specific objective of this multi-year project is to develop recommendations for making the national parks barrier free by 2040.
We are collaborating and learning from organizations in Canada and around the world who share similar goals of making the outdoors more accessible.