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Twitter: VancouverFringe

Wheelchair Accessibility

We at the Fringe are doing our best to become as accessible as possible to all audiences. While most Fringe Festival venues are fully wheelchair accessible, some shows are site-specific and wheelchair access may be limited in those venues. Please take a look at the information below for further details.

Granville Island: External Approach and Environment

The exterior of Granville Island is connected to accessible public transit; however, there are no buses going directly into Granville Island. The walkway into Granville Island from the bus stops poses a significant barrier to those with mobility issues as the paving is uneven, and as there are often poles placed in the middle of sidewalks. Patrons using wheelchairs are recommended to use either the HandyDart service, or private transport.

While most venue doors do not have mechanical switches, all main entrances will be propped open prior to curtain. However, patrons are expected to wait and line up outside prior to door opening times which may cause difficulties in poor weather conditions.

Parking is available throughout Granville Island, and there are a number of reserved wheelchair parking spots, so in general it should be easy for patrons with mobility concerns to park within close distance to a venue. One concern is that given the hectic traffic of Granville Island during event periods coupled with narrowed lanes; patrons may not be able to spend much time unloading in front of venues. It is recommended that patrons with accessibility issues arrive early to allow extra time for unloading and making their way to the venue.

General Theatre Environment

All performances are seated on a first come, first served basis, so patrons with special seating needs are encouraged to contact the Fringe ahead of time at boxoffice@vancouverfringe.com, so that we can accommodate any needs you may have.

We also encourage patrons with special seating needs to identify themselves to any volunteer at our venues to receive priority seating.

 

MAINSTAGE VENUES

Waterfront Theatre

There is accessible parking at Waterfront, but the passenger side of the parking spot is blocked by a pole which may prevent cars from opening their doors fully. Washrooms are accessible, but there is a sharp turn into the women’s washroom. The flooring is non-slip.

Studio 1398

This venue is located on the third floor of the Festival House, but there is both an elevator with a weight grade of 4000 lbs, and a staircase with sturdy stair-rails capable of supporting weight. Studio 1398 shares parking with Waterfront and may be subject to the same parking issues as Waterfront.

Revue Stage

The theatre, bathrooms and lobby are all easily accessible, there are no steps or ramps at any place in the venue. Wheelchair seating is in the front row of the theatre, right inside the doors. Parking can be found anywhere on the island.

Studio 16

This venue is fully accessible, including the bathrooms. The wheelchair entrance is through the front doors, and wheelchair seating is in the front row. There are no designated wheelchair parking spots, but there is plenty of street parking available.

The Cultch Historic Theatre and The Culture Lab

All areas but the balcony are wheelchair accessible. You can purchase tickets at the lowered counter outside, then enter the main space via the wide automatic door. Once inside, there is a vestibule leading into the main open-concept lobby. Continuing on, you will find three washroom options: a fully wheelchair accessible single stall gender-neutral washroom, and two gendered washrooms each with a wheelchair accessible stall. The staff are friendly and able to assist in a variety of ways.

There is no designated wheelchair accessible parking, but there is street parking around the neighborhood. As well, there are two parking spots that can be used for drop off/pick up at the rear of the building. We suggest that people call the box office ahead of time to reserve access to these spaces. There is wheelchair accessible transit within two blocks.

False Creek Gym

This venue is at the front of the False Creek Community Centre and is easily accessible. Patrons in wheelchairs will enter directly into the theatre and not through the Community Centre itself. Once inside the theatre, chairs can be moved to create space for a wheelchair. Washrooms are inside the Community Centre, accessible by exiting the venue and going through the Community Centre entrance. Parking can be found anywhere on Granville Island.

Performance Works

The theatre in this venue is fully accessible, with no steps or ramps. The washrooms are accessible, but the corridor to the men’s washroom is quite narrow. Both washrooms involve a sharp turn, and there are no mechanical switches to operate the washroom doors. The floor is made of concrete so it may be slippery when wet. Accessible parking is located right by the front door of this Venue.

 

BYOV VENUES

Firehall Arts Centre

This venue is a Heritage Building, so wheelchair access is a bit unique. The Firehall Front of House staff will lead wheelchairs to a side entrance that bypasses the lobby and goes directly into the theatre. To access the bathrooms, a Front of House staff member will lead the patron through backstage. This may be a tight space, based on the size of the wheelchair. Unfortunately, once inside the theatre there is no way for a wheelchair to access the lobby or the bar. If the patron would like to purchase a beverage or snack, the Firehall Front of House Staff are happy to complete the transaction on the patrons’ behalf. There is plenty of street parking available in the surrounding area.

Havana Theatre

This venue has a wheelchair specific entrance, with no ramps or steps. The venue likes to do pre-seating for wheelchairs whenever possible, so we suggest arriving early. There are no sharp turns in the venue, and the bathrooms are easily accessible. Parking can be found on the nearby streets, as there are no wheelchair specific parking spaces near the entrance to this venue.

Carousel Theatre

Chairs can be removed from the front row of this venue, so we advise arriving early to be sure there is space to do so. The hallway to the theatre is a bit narrow, and there may be a sharp turn for a large scooter to enter the theatre; however, the venue assures that they have not encountered any issues with this in the past. The bathrooms are wheelchair accessible. Parking can be found anywhere on the island.

Arts Umbrella

This venue is totally accessible. Larger scooters may have some difficulties maneuvering into the front door, but it generally does not pose a problem. The shows takes place on the ground floor of the building, with accessible washrooms close by. Parking is available anywhere on the island.

The Improv Centre

This venue is completely accessible. The majority of the theatre is raked seats with stairs, but there are plenty of floor seats that can be moved to accommodate a patron in a wheelchair as well. Wheelchair washrooms are easily accessible off the lobby.

 Woodwards Atrium

This venue is completely wheelchair accessible.

 

SITE-SPECIFIC VENUES

Ron Basford Park

Unfortunately, this venue is not wheelchair accessible for the Generation Hot Program Blue and Program Green Shows.

The show Slumber Here has a unique set up. Their show will run continuously during the scheduled show times. While the ticketed performances at the scheduled time are not wheelchair accessible, the theatrical experience surrounding the schedules times are accessible. You are welcome to head down at any time during their scheduled shows to watch this part of the performance, free of charge. The show runners will be happy to assist you.

Ocean & Crow Yoga

In the venue, some audience members sit on yoga mats on the floor, but there will be space at the back of the intimate room for wheelchair seating. There is a small bump to get over at the front door, and both tile and hardwood floors in the space. There could be a tight turnaround space in the lobby, depending on the size of mobility device used. There is a single stall gender-neutral accessible bathroom, but there are no stability bars installed.

Railspur Park

This venue is a flat patch of grass, so there may be some uneven ground, but should not have any major bumps or divots.  The Venue is outdoors, so there are no bathrooms on-site. Patrons in wheelchairs will be placed near the front of the crowd, as they rest of the audience will likely be standing for the majority of the show.

Make at Granville Island

This venue is inside a retail store. It is wheelchair accessible, however there are tight spaces between the product racks, which could be difficult for some to maneuver.

BIG ROCK BREWERY FRINGE BAR 

This space is entirely wheelchair accessible! There are no ramps, steps or uneven ground. There are wheelchair accessible port-a-potties in the space.

These units include inside handrails, lower toilet paper dispensers and door latches which are positioned for simplicity and ease of use. The unit is also slightly ramped to make entry as easy as possible for wheelchairs.

The units have the following specifications:

  • Door width: 31.7″ (830mm)
  • Door height: 80.8” (2054mm)
  • Seat height: 19″ (521mm)