Navigation Experience for Patrons who are Visually Impaired Enhanced at Kentucky Venues


Kentucky International Convention Center

Kentucky Venues’ guests who are blind or visually impaired will soon have access to an innovative technology that will improve their ability to navigate around large spaces and events.

Kentucky Venues, which operates the Kentucky International Convention Center (KICC) and the Kentucky Exposition Center (KEC) recently partnered with the American Printing House for the Blind (APH) on their Nearby Explorer mobile app.

The app, developed by APH, gives people who are blind or visually impaired audio cues about the world around them and communicates information with beacons that will be installed at strategic points throughout both KICC and KEC.

The app offers an unmatched level of independence when moving through unfamiliar buildings, especially large ones like KICC or KEC. It provides the equivalent of electronic signage, so the user knows what rooms, stairs, etc. are in the vicinity.

“As a user of the app who is blind, I appreciate knowing the general layout of the venue,” said Larry Skutchan, Director of Technology Product Research at APH.

“This way, I can walk in the correct direction, find rooms, find stairs, etc. Even if walking with another person, it is super helpful to get information about what is around.”

Installation of the beacons is anticipated to be complete at both properties by January 31, 2019.

“Accessibility and innovation have always been important to our organization,” said David S. Beck, President and CEO of Kentucky Venues.

“We are proud to partner with APH and want to assist all guests so they feel comfortable as they navigate through our facilities.”

The Nearby Explorer app is available for both Apple and Android phones.

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