Kyiv Metro recently opened the rebuilt Syrets metro station after a major overhaul.
Kyiv Metro is one of few organisations in Ukraine which in its work to create safe and unhindered access to its facilities and services for all categories of passengers, including disabled passengers and other low-mobility population groups, introduces a systematic approach to solving a number of problematic issues. The systemic work in respective directions is successful thanks to many years of cooperation of Kyiv Metro enterprise with specialists and specialists of All-Ukrainian public association National Assembly of People with Disabilities of Ukraine (NAIPAU).
And it was during the planning and execution of the appropriate works at Syrets station that the potential of many years of NAIU’s experience was tapped into by the NAIU Resource Centre – Barrier-free Ukraine. RCBU specialists took part in the development and implementation of the conceptual system of tactile floor navigation, which was first implemented in the Svyatoshyn metro station. Also there was developed and installed a system of mnemonic schemes, about the concept of which we wrote earlier.
WHAT’S NEW AND INNOVATIVE?
For Syrets station, we have developed and installed a universal station map for the Kyiv Metro line, which has no analogues among the existing similar solutions of corresponding quality in Ukraine today. The corresponding map maximises the basic principles of universal design. Why? The card can be freely used by ordinary passengers. The map is made in as large a print and in a contrasting colour ratio as possible, which is why it is accessible and very easy to look at for the visually impaired. The map is adapted to the tactile perception of the user without any residual vision and is as clear, comfortable and accessible to the touch as possible thanks to the duplication in tactile and Braille.
For Syrets station, experimental visual and tactile informers and signage were designed and installed For the first time, a design layout was developed that, according to the authors, should provide the most comfortable, fast and convenient information for all categories of passengers. We are talking about the signposts made in larger font in a contrasting colour ratio and duplicated in Braille. Suitable signposts are accessible to the visual perception of blind people with a few percent residual vision, are comfortable enough for visually impaired passengers, allow very quickly, without delaying the movement of crowds of passengers during peak hours, to obtain all necessary information for other categories of MHN, for example, people who are not oriented on the ground (stations). In other words, appropriate signage contributes to a safer station for all passengers. Up to Syrets station (at all other stations) there is currently a huge problem specifically related to visual accessibility. Visually impaired passengers and some other categories of VIPs navigate intuitively. And when they start looking at the old signs and schemes available today, they hinder the movement of other passengers.