To the Editor :

Your article prompted me to write this letter. I am a handicapped individual. My main means of transportation is a power wheelchair.

A half-inch jump in sidewalk level differences in a power chair is enough to make you stop and see if your kidneys are still where they are supposed to be.

A one and a half inch in slab height is enough to stop you. That means turning around and going back to where you came onto the sidewalk. It could be a block or even two and probably traveling in the street for that distance.

A 200 pound chair does not have much of a chance against a 2,000 pound automobile. There are numerous areas that do not have access ramps to sidewalks or into businesses.

A chair will not jump a six-inch curb. My main point is that Columbus does not have very well maintained handicap facilities on their public access areas.

Now for you, Mr. Schilling. Your area is one that I have to travel in the street. Twenty seventh from about 25th Avenue all the way out to about 48th Avenue is a disaster.

Your comments and attitude are telling me you are pretty self-centered. Let the handicapped stay home in their houses and die. We don’t need them in our precious little town.

But, I like Columbus. I would like to see the city officials put some pressure on all the people that have bad walks and get some improvement done. I would like to see the city put some pressure on themselves and get the ramps up to speed. Some ramps are so short and steep the chairs cannot go up or down. Or they have something like a water shutoff in the middle of the ramp that is too high to straddle and doesn’t leave enough room to go around so here we go backtracking to find an exit.

Power poles in the middle of the walk don’t help either. Some of the city sidewalks are also needing to be replaced, such as the south side of the park on 27th.

All I am trying to ask for is a chance for those of us who are not quite dead to have a chance to get out and enjoy this potentially beautiful town just as you do Mr. Schilling.

Ken Becker

Columbus

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