AUSTIN (KXAN) – With less than two weeks to go until Austin FC’s season opener, Harry Jarvis and his wife couldn’t be more excited.
“My wife and I are both big fans,” he said.
However, this excitement quickly turns into uncertainty and concern about the parking schedule for the game day.
“I started looking for parking information to get handicapped parking spaces, and that’s when I got into trouble,” Jarvis said. “I think there are probably a lot of people in a situation similar to mine who are going through a lot of confusion and want some answers before the game.”
How to get to Austin FC’s Q2 Stadium on game day – by car, bus or train
These are new questions for the couple as his wife recently started using a wheelchair after experiencing chronic pain and undergoing back surgery that made walking difficult and painful. So Jarvis logged on to the team website for clarity on reserved, accessible parking spaces, but couldn’t find a straight answer.
He spoke to a team official on the phone who assured him that there would be off-site parking accessible via third party Pavemint and a shuttle to the stadium, but Jarvis has yet to find out the full details.
“I don’t know where it drops in relation to our sitting position. I don’t know whether it is exactly on the opposite side of the stadium or right next to it, or whether there are several stops. ”
Austin FC President speaks about accessibility
According to legal requirements, parking spaces must contain a certain number of accessible parking spaces for each parking space. These spots must also meet certain dimensional requirements.
“Is it wide enough? Is there an overhang that would block a wheelchair lift? ”Said Brian East, a disability rights attorney in Texas. “Is it on an uneven surface? Is it too slanted so that it rolls away when the wheelchair is parked? ”
ADA guidelines for accessible parking
One additional accessible space is required for every fifty spaces added. If there are more than 500 parking spaces, the law requires that 2% of the parking spaces are accessible.
Andy Loughnane, President of Austin FC, ensured that KXAN’s on-site properties are ADA compliant. However, these lots initially only contained around 850 spaces, and those spaces – including the accessible ones – sold out quickly.
That’s why they have teamed up with a group called Pavemint to provide nearly 5,000 more off-site parking spaces at buildings and businesses within a mile of the stadium.
“It distributes the traffic instead of having everything on site. There are many stadiums that have thousands of parking spaces on site, which does not result in a large entry or exit.
Loughnane confirmed that there would be a shuttle that would transport fans from the Pavemint squares and seats to the front of the stadium, and he noted that it would be ADA compliant and accessible to everyone.
East said he was still not surprised that families with mobility problems would want specific details about transportation schedules in advance.
“For many people, walking a mile may not be a big deal, but for many people who use wheelchairs, it can be very difficult. It can even be impossible to do, and it can even be harmful, ”he said.