Subways and buses may be convenient for most of us, but that’s often a different story for individuals who can’t get around as easily due to mobility needs. In an attempt to make public transit more accessible for that portion of the population, Google is introducing new “wheelchair accessible” routes in Maps’ transit navigation, starting with six major cities.
Wheelchair-accessible routes depend on whether a station has accessible stops, platforms, entrances, and exits. They’re easy enough to toggle; just select the public transportation option after you’ve set the origin and destination, click ‘Options,” and check “Wheelchair accessible” as the preferred route.
Google mentions that those with wheelchairs aren’t the only ones who can take advantage of this feature; it might also come in handy if you’re on crutches or pushing a stroller around. Additionally, Local Guides played a special role in designating areas as wheelchair-accessible and gathered at 200 global meet-ups. In total, they helped answer pertinent questions for over 12 million places, which is no small feat.
Wheelchair-accessible routes are rolling out starting today to five major metropolitan transit centers: Boston, London, Mexico City, Sydney, and Tokyo. In the coming months, Google will be working with more transit agencies to bring more of these routes to Maps. If you’re in one of those five cities, let us know if this new option is showing up.