AUSTIN – Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) is proud to announce an initiative that will increase accessibility in the outdoors for all Texans. Working with WT Group, an engineering consulting group, the agency engaged in a comprehensive accessibility evaluation resulting in an Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Transition Plan that will substantially improve access and communication efforts.
Throughout the evaluation process, TPWD actively sought public input, fostering engagement through townhall meetings, a statewide survey and multiple meetings with the TPWD Accessibility Advisory Committee. This inclusive approach provided the feedback necessary to determine the priorities of Texans with disabilities and ensured that the needs and perspectives of the community were put at the forefront of the decision-making process.
“We are thrilled to embark on this transformative journey toward making the great outdoors accessible to all Texans,” said TPWD Executive Director David Yoskowitz, Ph.D. “Through collaboration and engagement with our community, we have crafted a phased plan for updates that will undoubtedly require substantial effort, resources and time. However, we believe that the long-term benefits will far outweigh the challenges and are committed to making TPWD more accessible.”
The phased plan includes updates to infrastructure, facilities, programs and services across the system. Recognizing the importance of transparency, TPWD has established a dedicated website for the initiative so visitors with disabilities can quickly find information about permits and passes, modification requests, frequently asked questions and more. Interested individuals can also visit the website for regular updates on agency progress toward ADA improvements.
TPWD is committed to expanding access, ensuring that all Texans, regardless of ability, can enjoy nature and outdoor activities.