Architectural barriers: you don’t realize how many they are until you happen to be in the conditions of dealing with them. That’s why the problem is still invisible to the majority. Nevertheless, now it’s the perfect time to work on it: the population in Europe is growing older and, at the same time, it’s abandoning the small towns, in favour of the cities – moreover, by 2020 the EU is expected to have 120 million people with disabilities. That’s why cities need to be adapted to the upcoming needs of their inhabitants.
The Access City Award answers exactly to this purpose. It pursues three main goals:
- provide to organisations and municipalities the chance to have their project funded;
- share and exchange good practices among municiplaities;
- and, of course, cities with better facilities.
The purpose of the award is to recognises and celebrates a city’s willingness, ability and efforts to become more accessible, in order to:
- guarantee equal access to fundamental rights;
- improve the quality of life of its population and ensure that everybody – regardless of age, mobility or ability – has equal access to all the resources and pleasures cities have to offer.
Who can participate?
The contest is open to:
- all EU cities of over 50 000 inhabitants;
- urban areas composed of two or more towns with a combined population of over 50 000 inhabitants, if they are in EU countries with fewer than 2 cities with over 50 000 inhabitants.
As one can see, entries must be submitted by the local municipality or mayoral office. This means that, if you’re an organisation or association whishing to participate to the contest, you should contact the respecitve offices and propose to apply.
Here there is the application form. The award is implemented within the European Disability Strategy 2010-2020, that implies, among others, the worki towards a barrier-free Europe.
How much is the prize?
2019 marks the 10th annyversary of ACA. The European Commission is then going to award the winning cities with a total of EUR 350.000, to be split among the first three cities that scored the best result.
The deadline to submit the projects is set on 11 September 2019, 24:00 CET.