Walk, Talk and Roll event encourages everyone to consider the accessibility of Athens

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For the past three years the Athens City Commission on Disabilities has been inviting the public to join an ongoing conversation about improving the accessibility of Athens with their annual Walk, Talk and Roll event, which takes place again this Friday.

Participants will be led by Commission chairperson Davey McNelly and Committee member Rob Delach on a journey focusing on the level of accessibility in Athens starting at 11:30 a.m. at Bella Vino (12 W. Stimson Ave.) and concluding at Armory Park (2 E. Carpenter Street).


“The (Walk, Talk and Roll) events have been used to go over certain areas that the city might be trying to improve, or major street-scaping projects that have been happening,” said McNelly, noting that the Commission worked with the City of Athens to make recent projects of this nature on Union Street and Stimson Avenue more accessible.

McNelly said improving the accessibility of Athens’ streets is beneficial to everyone.

“I use an electric wheelchair to get around, but when things are accessible for an electric wheelchair, it makes them more accessible for people who use walkers or canes or strollers, who walk their dogs, who ride their bicycles,” said McNelly. “We’ve got a lot of hills in Athens, and a lot of pretty old infrastructure. A lot of times it’s dangerous for me to use the sidewalk because it’s cracked, so I have to walk in the street to get around, and that can get a little dicey, a little dangerous.”

McNelly said the upcoming event is especially important due to the extensive upcoming street-scaping project the City has planned for Uptown Athens.

“I think it’s a really exciting opportunity for a lot of businesses and buildings to become more accessible. The streets and sidewalks that are going to be street-scaped in 2023 – and it might get pushed back to 2024, depending on contractors and everything – but the idea is that the sidewalks are going to be completely repaved,” said McNelly. “This is a huge opportunity. I would say that maybe half of the uptown businesses are currently accessible. And with this project, we think all of the businesses that are involved can become accessible.”

The Athens City Commission on Disabilities’ 2022 Walk, Talk and Roll will come to a close around 12:15 p.m. with a program and refreshments at Armory Park. Find more information about the Commission at this link, or email