New app facilitates mobility and parking for people with disabilities and avoids fraud

January 27, 2017

Although treaties of the European Union guarantee the fundamental right of any European citizen to move freely between its member states, people with reduced mobility cannot yet fully enjoy it.

In the specific case of people with disabilities, there are a number of common problems in urban areas. On the one hand, it is difficult to find information on the possibilities of both accessible public transport and private vehicle transport. On the other hand, although in most European countries it is usual to have parking spaces reserved for people with disabilities, the availability of these is limited, it is not easy to know their location and fraudulent use is made of them.

The SIMON project responds to these challenges by offering a complete integration of technological solutions that facilitate accessible navigation, mobility information and the management of access rights for parking badge holders. These solutions have been tested on a large scale in the cities of Madrid, Lisbon, Parma and Reading.

Among the different services that SIMON can offer, the combination of a mobile application and a new smart card model stands out. Through them, users have information on accessibility and parking in real time, are able to validate themselves as legitimate users of parking spaces and can plan accessible routes using multimodal transport.

The solutions proposed by SIMON also include applications and services for public authorities, public transport operators and parking service managers. In the cities that adopt this system, SIMON allows them to manage the use of the public , receiving real-time information on the use of reserved parking spots, reducing fraud and allowing inclusion policies to promote the sustainable use of all modes.

Finally, work is being done to ensure that these solutions, especially the new smart card model, are adopted as a standard in the European Union, so that the mobility of citizens regardless of their place of residence is provided.

SIMON project will finish in March 2017, and the main results will be presented to end users and interested stakeholders some weeks before, after evaluation and validation of pilot demonstration activities have been done. This final event will take place in Madrid, where local, national and European institutions will meet to know first-hand about SIMON conclusions.

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not rated yet Jan 28, 2017
Conforming disabled parking spaces for disabled access has helpful possibilities. However, standardization of handicapped accommodations has lagged far behind. In some countries such as the Benelux Countries, one can request an escort (Begeleiderskaart) that allows a disabled person's assistant to ride with them at no cost, while the disabled person must buy one ticket for themselves. However, in Germany must be blind to have an escort assist without paying for a second ticket. In Finland, one must be in a wheelchair. For some reason, train systems are the least well organized than is the case for aviation passengers or parking spots for automobile drivers and passengers. In no train or busses that I have used have I ever seen a single seat reserved for disabled passengers. At least French trains place small signs in their trains requesting passengers to give up their seats to infirm and senior passengers. In today's society, one can no longer assume proper behavior.

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