City centre access for blind and partially sighted people in Peterborough has been boosted by a £50,000 technology grant from the Department of Transport.
The joint bid with the RNIB was one of 19 successful applications to a government fund set up to encourage ideas to improve city centre travel through smart innovation. The successful bids all focused on using cutting edge technology such as apps and sensors to improve accessibility, cut congestion and improve parking. The first phase of the Peterborough project will use innovative technology to create a virtual reality model of the city centre to test out various accessibility solutions. The second phase is to implement the successful solutions into the real city centre. The EyeWear app applies filters which mimic eye conditions such as Cataracts, Glaucoma and Age-related Macular Degeneration. This raises awareness of the issues people with sight difficulties fac and will help the city council better understand what assistance they need.
John Worsfold, RNIB Innovation Implementation Manager said: “We want to see people with sight loss be able to visit Peterborough city centre with confidence, as we know that maintaining independence is incredibly important to people living with sight loss.”