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And the First European Access City Award Goes to....Avila, Spain

02/12/2010 | 1 comments

European Access City Award logoBrussels, 2 December 2010. 

 Ávila, whose motto is "A City for Everyone" is a Spanish city known widely for its medieval walls. Today it won the first-ever European award for improving access for people with disabilities, the Access●City Award 2011.

The annual honour aims to award efforts to improve accessibility in the urban environment and to foster equal participation of people with disabilities.

The Commission praised Ávila’s plan, developed since 2002, to improve accessibility to public buildings and to give incentives for private initiatives. It has also developed accessible tourism facilities and improved job opportunities for people with disabilities – working directly with disabled and elderly people's organisations.

Commission Vice-President Viviane Reding, the EU’s Justice Commissioner, and Her Royal Highness Princess Astrid of Belgium presented the award at a ceremony in Brussels on the occasion of the European Day of People with Disabilities (3 December). It is one of the actions under the Commission's new strategy for a barrier-free Europe for disabled people.

The Access City Award

The Access City Award was established in 2010 by the European Commission to promote and recognise those cities with more than 50.000 inhabitants that undertake initiatives to improve the accessibility in the urban environment, Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), citizens' services, transport and other fields .

The call also offers a second award to a network of cities or organizations that have made an outstanding contribution to improving accessibility for people with disabilities during 2010.

66 candidates from 19 countries entered the contest, 13 of which were from Spain. There were 6 candidates for the  award of networks of cities and organizations.

Read the European Commission's Press Release in all EU languages

Download the Press release in PDF format from the right-hand panel (English version).

Visit the website of the EU Access City Award

Visit the City of Ávila website

City of Avila Access Guide Cover pageDownload the City of Ávila Access Guide (in Spanish only), PDF format, (2.70 Mb)




1 comment(s) posted

Posted by Ambrose Ivor on 2010/12/03 - 10:27:11

On behalf of ENAT, I send our warm congratulations to Ávila's mayor, public servants, citizens and enterprises. This is a great achievement and well deserved. I hope that more cities will follow the lead of Ávila in the making their environment and services accessible and inclusive for citizens with disabilities. Ávila was already well known as a tourist attraction and may now expect even more visitors! That's a good reward in these difficult economic times...

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General Information

Submitted by: Ivor Ambrose
Language(s): BUL | DA | DE | EL | EN | ES | ET | FI | FR | HU | IT | LT | LV | MT | NL | PL | PT | RO | SLO | SLV | SV


Publisher: European Commission
Date published on the web: 02/12/2010


Architecture, design and planning | Assistive Technologies | Buildings and facilities design, maintenance | Disability, disabilities, technical aids | Information and Communication Technologies | Policy, legislation | Special services for disabled visitors | Standards