Expat Forum For People Moving Overseas And Living Abroad banner
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello all,

I am a single gentleman who has limited mobility and who uses a
an electric wheel chair/ power chair, to get around. My question is
which cities, whether urban or not, would be most accessible for
a person who uses an electronic wheel chair to get around?

I am most interested in temperate areas near and around Mexico
City, the State of Michoachan, the State of Guerrero and in the
Ensenada area.
I do not get out much so if the area is close to restaurants, shopping
and other conveniences, I would be fine. I do have a minivan with an
electric lift to haul the power chair in, if needed.

Your suggestions and comments are appreciated. Thank you in advance!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,726 Posts
As a general statement: Mexico is not very conducive to wheelchair navigation and many of the places you may wish to visit will have limited parking. Malls and large 'big box stores' will have handicapped parking, including wide spaces for a van, such as yours.
It is going to take some real searching; first for the city, then for the neighborhood, before you will find the right spot. Also; remember to consider the seasonal temperatures (no central heat or AC) and the altitude's effect upon breathing capacity, especially for seniors.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
9,048 Posts
As a general statement: Mexico is not very conducive to wheelchair navigation and many of the places you may wish to visit will have limited parking. Malls and large 'big box stores' will have handicapped parking, including wide spaces for a van, such as yours.
It is going to take some real searching; first for the city, then for the neighborhood, before you will find the right spot. Also; remember to consider the seasonal temperatures (no central heat or AC) and the altitude's effect upon breathing capacity, especially for seniors.
I'd like to add that in general sidewalks are not kept in good repair, even in the nicer neighborhoods. I would imagine that getting around in a wheelchair even in the middle-class area where I live in Mexico City could be a challenge, though not an impossible one to deal with.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,023 Posts
No easy answer. Every block or district will be different where ever you go. Unless you get very lucky I'd plan on using your car every time you venture out.

Cobble stones, uneven sidewalks and lack of wheel chair ramps will be common. The Chapala area is spread out and stores/restaurants along the lake road may give you less access problems than being in town. The center of a city or village will be difficult to say the least. Maybe the Ensenada area because it's newer?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,464 Posts
Wheelchairs

I'd like to add that in general sidewalks are not kept in good repair, even in the nicer neighborhoods. I would imagine that getting around in a wheelchair even in the middle-class area where I live in Mexico City could be a challenge, though not an impossible one to deal with.
An electric wheelchair is even more of a problem. Normally taxi drivers might not even stop to pick people up if someone is in a wheel chair but some will and ask for more money or not. I have not seen any electric wheel chairs so far. I have seen many times, my mother in law uses one when out, etc. where at a building with many steps, church, office building etc. where men will immediately offer to pick it up with the person in it to carry it up or down which is very normal to run across everywhere. Also they do not seem to know how to tilt wheelchairs back far enough or even turn them around on small rises backwards when maneuvering outside which is dangerous in itself. That is why it is better with a few people helping. I saw a man trying to go up many stairs with no help not tilting it very far and could not get it up and almost dumping it and the lady on the first step. They want to help but don't know the correct way to handle stairs sometimes and when I do it my mother in law freaks out that she is at such an angle and being jerked hard. There is no gentle way to get a heavy person up by yourself. That is why most times I see 3 or 4 men just lift it up to the top or down to the bottom as the status quo.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,726 Posts
We do have a couple of people in wheelchairs, one motorized, here in Chapala. They can navigate the downtown area, plaza, etc. without too much difficulty; and there are always volunteers to help over the rough spots. There are some curb cuts and they may have actually hired a mason to make a few of them, so that they could get home from downtown. Nobody is likely to stop you from doing that. If it is practical for you, a conventional chair might be easier with its larger wheels.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
581 Posts
There are many areas in Mexico City that are just about OK, the important thing would be to live close to an area with a modern shopping centre which would count with most facilities.

The Polanco and Irrigacion colonias (neighborhoods) are in an area with many big shopping centres and amenities, including areas where people on wheel chairs can go for a bit of fresh air (I am thinking Homero/Horacio streets & the main of Polanco's park, Chapultepec is not far away and a wheelchair could move there in the regular roads, which are closed to most traffic) but living there may be expensive (not necessarily, there are lots of new developments, some of them may be for cheaper housing).

Housing could be a problem since there is little thought about people with disabilities, even in new developments (the modern place where my sister lives, just around 5 years old, is completely unsuitable for anybody with mobility problems, one could not access the property on a wheel chair at all :-( ).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,237 Posts
One major problem is the town cuts the sidewalk corners making a ramp for chairs and 6 feet down the sidewalk is a light pole right in the middle of the sidewalk...

I would think a Lark type electric scooter would be better than a chair is they seems to be more maneuverable than a regular wheel chair, especially trying to drive on cobble stone streets........
 

·
Super Moderator
Guadalajara, México
Joined
·
7,070 Posts
My suggestion would be to live in the center of one of the bigger cities, near a mercado (a collection of small stalls selling things). Lots of shops cluster around these mercados, so you can usually get everything you need for daily life: groceries, haircuts, hardware, clothes, banking, tiny restaurants, bakeries, etc, all located within a block or so. The sidewalks are in bad shape but the streets are pretty good and in a neighborhood off the main streets, a chair could just go along the side of the street. The wheelchair cuts in the sidewalk are pretty inconsistent, but there are driveway cuts everywhere so it would be easy to get on and off the sidewalk.

You shouldn't have to use the van for daily needs.

Incidentally, some of the buses in the bigger cities have wheel chair lifts, but at least in Guadalajara, they are few and far between.
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top