Norfolk, Va. - Last year, a woman asked NewsChannel 3 to take action to get Norfolk to improve bus stops and infrastructure for those who are visually impaired and in wheelchairs. Now we're getting results!
Some folks used to have to drive their wheelchairs into the grass to catch the bus but now, there is pavement.
They used to have to stand outside to wait, rain or shine but now, there is a dedicated bus shelter.
In addition, there is no more riding or walking in the road. Now there are sidewalks and wheelchair accessible ramps all the way down Lake Herbert Drive so people with disabilities can actually get to the Norfolk Social Security office safely.
“Marvelous, it’s an achievement for the city,” said Shirley Confino-Rehder, the chairwoman of the Norfolk Mayor's Commission for Persons with Disabilities.
She came to NewsChannel 3 last June, asking us to take action and help them get HRT and the city to improve the bus stops and infrastructure to accommodate those visually impaired and in wheelchairs.
The Commission presented their case to the HRT Board, and this spring, their vision was made a reality. HRT built the bus shelters, but the city actually laid the concrete pads, and upgraded all the sidewalks.
To allow people to get from the bus stops to the sidewalks, the City of Norfolk even installed a walkway through the grass, and to do that, they upgraded the storm drainage system right on the side of Military Highway.
The city also upgraded the crosswalks on the busy roadway, making it just a bit safer to cross to the bus stop on the other side.
“Now they have a good place to cross the street, and a good place to walk that leads them into the building,” said Confino-Rehder.