Google Maps eases transit of wheelchair-bound commuters

As the name suggests, the feature is meant to help people who use wheelchairs, but Google is also aware that anyone with mobility issues - as well as families with baby strollers - could benefit from the wheelchair-friendly routes. After that select the "Wheelchair accessible" toggle. It's also thought that in NY, about 80 percent of subways are inaccessible to those using a wheelchair, something that prompted a lawsuit this week.

Launching first in major cities including London, New York, Tokyo, Mexico City, Boston, and Sydney, Google has plans to roll the journey planner out to other cities.

Using it is straightforward enough for anyone that has used Maps before. From there, select "Public Transportation" and then "Options".

Google explained in a blog post that much of the data was gathered as part of its Local Guides program. You will be able to see the list of all that possible routes that accommodate wheelchairs.

Then tap "Options" and under the Routes section, you will find "wheelchair accessible" as a new route type. Google announced that it will look forward to work with other transit agencies to bring more wheelchair-accessible routes.

Last year, Local Guides from all over the world came together at 200 global meet-ups to answer accessibility questions for more than 12m locations, like whether a place has an accessible bathroom or a step-free entrance.

In 2017, Google Maps added the feature to see if a space is accessible by wheelchair under the "amenities" tab. Unlike many online publications, we don't have a paywall or run banner advertising, because we want to keep our journalism open, without influence or the need to chase traffic.

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