“One meter from east to west, 1.5 meters from north to south, 80 centimeters in between…” This muttering comes from a volunteer who is measuring the tactile pavings on a footpath near the Grand View Park in Beijing’s Xuanwu District. Teng Luning, head of the local volunteer station, tells this reporter: “We make a point of drawing a map of all the blind tracks around our station, so that every volunteer will have a training and service manual.”
The map in the making will certainly be one of a kind. According to Teng, it provides detailed information about the blind stone pavements within one kilometer of the volunteer station, including their locations, starting, turning, and finish points, as well as their slope gradients, lengths, and widths.
In addition to those specifics about the grooved tracks for the blind, the volunteers also mark out the locations of nearby scenic spots, specialty stores, toilets, roadside benches, bus stops and so on. Teng says: “With this map, our volunteers can lead the blind people to their destinations, and tell them about the places of interest along the way, so that the visitors will get a better idea of Xuanwu District.”