Happy Friday Everyone! Here is a special blog from our Executive Director:

Walking around town, crossing streets, and adjusting your path to accommodate things placed in the path of travel is something most people take for granted.  Roger and I find it a little more challenging.  Most people watch the traffic signals and cross on a green light and stop when it’s red.  Well, if you can’t see the lights, it becomes a more interesting process.

Sometimes Roger walks home from work using his white cane and a GPS device.  Those devices don’t tell him if it’s safe to walk or not; he has to use his ears.  He will cross when he doesn’t hear traffic regardless if the light is red or green.  I’m not as brave as Roger and I cross with a sighted guide.  I do find it frustrating to stand for a red light when I can’t hear any cars coming.  I’m ready to just cross.

Anyway, Dan and I go for walks in our neighborhood every evening.  We were walking on the sidewalk along Tyler Road across from Maize South School.  We walked up to the traffic light and Dan pushed the button…a beeping began and a male voice announced, “WAIT WAIT” so I danced a little happy dance at finding this accessible crossing and waited.  Then the male voice announced, “WALK Maize” and began counting down.  When we got to the middle of the street the signal on the other side picked up the count.  It was so awesome.  When we crossed to go home the nice male voice again told me to wait, walk and he announced “Tyler”.

My question for this Friday is, “why can’t we have these accessible traffic signals absolutely everywhere?”  They are perfect for everyone.

-Chris Owens, Executive Director