As the trend of migration from rural to urban areas continues, it is estimated that by 2050, one billion people with disabilities will live in cities. Many of these urban centers, with cores dating back hundreds or even thousands of years, are currently ill-equipped to respond to this demand. There is, therefore, an immediate challenge for architects, urban planners, and city officials to address the inaccessibility of historic cities, from uneven cobblestones to narrow, stepped alleys, creating an urban realm that offers universal mobility without detracting from their historic charm. The common perception that ancient and historic cities are incapable of adhering to universal design principles is disproven by the Roman city of Chester in the United Kingdom. In 2017, the city was named as the most accessible city in Europe by the European Union’s Access City Award, recognizing and celebrating a city’s ability and effort to become more accessible.
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