|Image: Google Street View|
|The fire hydrant seen here blocking the curb ramp along Bethany Home Road at 3rd Avenue was relocated after Thomas Vickery complained. The scooter-driving disabled man wants the city to address the sidewalk's other problems.|
Thomas Vickery lit a fire under the butts of city officials earlier this year, shaming them into finally moving a fire hydrant that blocked a curb ramp on a sidewalk.
Now he wants the city of Phoenix to move up its schedule to do more improvements along Bethany Home Road that will make it easier for people who, like him, can't walk.
Vickery, a Chicago transplant who has cerebral palsy, takes a scooter nearly everywhere he goes. And he's not one to sit at home every day -- he often rides the scooter from his home near Central and Maryland to Christown Spectrum Mall
at 19th Avenue and Bethany Home Road. His "preferred route" is to go up Central to Bethany Home, then take a straight shot to the mall. There are obstacles for his scooter no matter which way he goes, but he's been particularly annoyed with the condition of the sidewalks along Bethany Home.
As the above screen shot from Google Street View shows, a fire hydrant used to sit squarely in the middle of a curb ramp at 3rd Avenue and Bethany Home. The city knew since 2008 that the location of the hydrant was out of compliance with the American Disabilities Act, says an April article
in the Arizona Republic
, but did nothing to fix it until after Vickery complained.