1 Blue Jays Way, Toronto, ON M5V 1J1
Take me out to the Jays game! The Rogers Centre (it will always be the SkyDome in my heart, but that’s another story) is the epicenter for baseball in Canada. There’s nothing better than an ice cold brewski, a foot long and the dome open to watch the Blue Jays crank some home runs. What’s even better- they are set up very well for accessibility.
You can find public parking downtown all around the Rogers Centre, but your best option may be calling to reserve underground accessible parking at the Rogers Centre, with your disability permit number. This can be done prior to the game by calling 416- 341-3004. For transit, I would recommend getting to Union Station and exiting the south side of the station (the York concourse) and taking Bremner Boulevard over to Gate 7.
Gate 7 is the designated accessible entrance, although there are other gates that can also be used. There are elevators available at gates 3, 7, 9 and 13 for entry, but gate 7 is the ideal accessibility entrance for best convenience as well as designated pickup and drop-off for WheelTrans. There are curb cuts in the sidewalk and it is level pavement all the way to the entrance. Keep in mind, the police enforce some roadblocks pre-and post game on Bremner Boulevard and Rees Street. In my experience, they will let you get as close as possible if you let them know you are dropping off someone with mobility issues, which is usually a short distance from Gate 7.
At Gate 7 there will always be event staff present to hold doors open, check your tickets and they will ask to have a look in any bags for security purposes. The doorway is 35 inches wide to enter the building and from here you can take the elevators or proceed right onto the 100 level. There is a hallway and one more doorway 35 inches wide to get out to the 100-level concourse and then the world is your oyster!
All of the concourses are wide walkways made of smooth concrete (if you’re like me you may just have to be careful you don’t run over people’s toes when it gets busy as the large concourse spaces do get quite congested at the start and end of games). Everything from the Jays Shop to the Hogtown grill is wheelchair accessible. There is seating available on this level in sections 117L to 126R in the infield and sections 109L to 112L as well as 131R to 134L in the outfield. The outfield seats have a partially obstructed view due to the railing, whereas the infield seats have a lower glass railing for better viewing. There is also seating available on the 200 level in sections 207L to 208R and 240L to 241R with a great view from the outfield.
There are accessible stalls available in the washrooms that are 58 X 59 inches with a 36-inch door and grab bars beside and behind the toilet. The floating sinks are 29 inches high. If you are looking for more privacy, they have accessible private washrooms in section 134 for accessibility, nursing, families, etc. which have lever handles for entry, but no automatic door button. These have 35-inch doorways, 29-inch floating sinks, grab bars behind and beside the toilet as well as change tables 39 inches high. A private washroom is also available in section 238.
But wait… if you are planning an event or just feeling fancy, the luxury suites are also an option for people with mobility issues. These come in different sizes, but all have lots of turning space and the furniture can be rearranged according to your needs. Each suite can accommodate multiple mobility devices if necessary, and a host is dedicated to each suite for the full duration of the game. Only one of the larger suites (available at request) has a private washroom inside the suite, with similar dimensions to the above mentioned private washrooms. Fortunately, there is a number of accessible washrooms in the hallway available to any suite.
Some other services available to make your experience more comfortable: the Blue Jays organization offer Ambassadors, who are mobile escorts happy to assist you. They can be booked for things like meeting you at the Gate 7 entrance to help with entering, accompanying you to your seating, or helping you check your assistive device at fan services. This can be done by calling the fan services team at 416-341-1000 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. There is also in-seat service for select food and beverages. If you have any general issues while at the ballpark, you can always text the FAN ASSIST at 416-503-4131 with your location and problem. Service dogs are also always welcome!
In our experience, all staff members have been extremely helpful and accommodating. The ushers are always monitoring the accessible seating sections and are likely to check in with you at least a few times during the game. Unfortunately, they haven’t been able to assist us with our requests for more hits by the home-team, but they are always pleasant and working to ensure your experience is optimal.
Whether it’s a pitching duel, or a slugfest the bluebirds always need your support. So, come on down and I’ll see you there. Let’s go Blue Jays!