A Fully Accessible Day in Milan
Dear friends, I’d like to share my experience of a fully mobility scooter accessible day in Milan.
The main sights included:
Milan Cathedral (Duomo Di Milano),
La Scala Opera House (Teatro Alla Scala) and its Museum,
Gae Aulenti Square (Piazza Gae Aulenti),
“Vertical Forest” (Bosco Verticale).
My first destination was the MILAN CATHEDRAL (DUOMO DI MILANO) – the cathedral church of Milan dedicated to St.Mary of the Nativity (Santa Maria Nascente), it is the seat of the Archbishop of Milan. It is the largest church in Italy (the larger St. Peter's Basilica is in the State of Vatican City) and the third largest in the world.
I got there from Milan Central railway station by metro. I took the metro train at the Milano Centrale metro station and got off at the Duomo metro station, both accessible by lift. Here is a map of Milan transport accessibility taken from http://transitmap.net/image/20151975998:
As I went out of the underground, I could see the beautiful pure white cathedral on my left. But first I enjoyed the view of the square (Piazza del Duomo).
Then I needed to go round the right corner of the cathedral to get free tickets at a ticket office to enter the Duomo and get to the Cathedral Terraces by lift, – children up to 6 years old, people with disabilities and their helpers are given free tickets there, – but a security officer was so kind that he went and got the tickets for me and my daughter, and I just stood and waited for him at the entrance. When I got the tickets, I entered the Duomo and saw an amazing interior:
The statue on the picture above is said to be the prototype of the Statue of Liberty.
That day the lift didn’t work, so I couldn’t get to the top of the roof. But there IS a lift for wheelers to the Cathedral Terraces. This is the quote from https://www.duomomilano.it/en/infopage/accessibility/f1806ea0-2784-4afc-a56d-1f612c5bba12/: “A lift can be used (entrance 65 cm, interior 113x83 cm) to reach the Cathedral Terraces. The architectural barriers present allow access to the level of the walkways, but it is not possible to complete the whole route. The walkways have very narrow spaces and allow only one person through at a time. In order to facilitate your visit to the Terraces, please contact Veneranda Fabbrica del Duomo di Milano on 02.72022656 or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.”
There is the LA SCALA OPERA HOUSE (TEATRO ALLA SCALA) and its MUSEUM near the Duomo, just a five-minute scooter ride from the Duomo. You only need to take the right turn from the Duomo Square.
I only visited the LA SCALA MUSEUM. So I took a free ticket for the disabled at a ticket office on the left from the main entrance of the opera house. The lift to get to the museum is just next to the ticket office.
Having entered the museum, I was greatly impressed by an exciting collection of La Scala costumes, jewelries, photos, paintings, etc.
The building of the museum is connected with that of the opera house. So, there, in the museum, if there is no performance, you can see THE INTERIOR OF THE OPERA HOUSE from one of the theater boxes.
Next, I made half an hour ride to the GAE AULENTI SQUARE (PIAZZA GAE AULENTI) – the new face of Milan representing its urban renovation.
The square is raised 10 meters above the ground with 3 levels (underground station, parking, and retail). You can get to each level by lift.
Paved with slate, it is surrounded by two levels of canopies in iron, wood and glass built in accordance with the principles of eco-sustainability; it is covered with solar panels that provide power for the three adjacent towers. The piazza is enhanced by three circular infinity fountains surrounded by a 105 meter flowing circle of curved seating in stone grit and porticoes that adorn the underlying walkways and shop windows.
Don't miss Egg – the first permanent urban installation.
By night the cascading fountains are illuminated with vibrant colors and the LED Solar Tree also lights up after dark by using solar energy stored during the day.
From Piazza Gae Aulenti you can see the “VERTICAL FOREST” (BOSCO VERTICALE) – two residential towers 111 and 76 meters high with approximately 550 and 350 planted trees on their terraces.
Or you can scoot to these towers to take a closer look.
Here, in Milan, you can see the mix of past and future, classics and innovations, high-tech and eco-friendly environment.
Enjoy your trip to this wonderful city!