‘Access Map’

Lisa Stiffler at GeekWire: “Waze, HERE, Apple Maps, Google Maps. The list of sites and apps to help you navigate the fastest driving route keeps growing. If you’re hoofing it, however, you’ve largely been on your own to figure out a safe and speedy pedestrian path.

But now walkers are starting to catch up to cars in the realm of mapping apps thanks to the University of Washington’s Taskar Center for Accessible Technology.

The group today is releasing an online tool called Access Map that will allow Seattle pedestrians to enter addresses and generate customized walking directions. Users can request maps that include only routes with sidewalks with sloped “curb cuts” that allow strollers and wheelchairs to easily pass, and that bypass construction sites and exclude the steepest streets.

The UW researchers are additionally creating tools to help other cities and communities build their own maps. They’re also working on a project with Seattle Public Schools to help families crowdsource and discover safer routes for kids walking to school….

In an attempt to make it easier for others to follow in their footsteps, the UW researchers recently launched their OpenSidewalks project, which will create a set of standards for mapping pedestrian routes….(More)”