City Agrees to Provide More Stadium Seating for Disabled
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) _ City Council members unanimously agreed to settle a lawsuit charging the city with discrimination against disabled people in building the Florida Suncoast Dome.
Under Thursday’s settlement, wheelchair seating would be dispersed throughout the stadium, giving users the opportunity to sit in different areas at different prices.
The 43,000-seat stadium, built as part of the city’s efforts to lure a major league baseball franchise, opened in February with 274 wheelchair spaces on the main concourse. The lawsuit demanded 440 spaces scattered across all levels. The settlement provides for at least 308 spaces, including spaces on all levels.
The agreement must be approved by the U.S. District Court and all plaintiffs involved, but lead plaintiff George Locascio expressed his satisfaction.
″I think it was a good settlement,″ Locascio said.
Locascio and 13 other plaintiffs originally demanded changes that would have added $3 million to the cost of the $138 million stadium. The structural changes required by the settlement will cost $600,000 to $700,000.