May 12, 2015, 08:20 AM
Siena, Parking and a Wheelchair
Buongiorno! We will be driving to Siena and I have read the excellent parking page but there is nothing mentioned about the Pian d'Ovile lot. It appears to be just outside the ZTL, but is it a public lot? It seemed to me that it would be the best lot for someone in a wheelchair as this area is fairly high up on the hill and any hills from here would be fairly gradual. My friend can wheel himself up gradual rises but steeper ones, like the roads from the Il Campo and Santa Caterina lots are long and steep and would give us both a workout.
Santa Caterina's escalators would be nice as I hear the Duomo is at the highest point in town - we have a system for using them - but I am scared of even one escalator being out of service. If so, the whole thing becomes useless for us and then we'd have to continue up steep Via Fontebranda, which would be exhausting so early in our day. The escalators over on the San Francesco side seem like a better bet as it's pretty flat between the parking lot and the escalators, and if one isn't working, it's not too bad to get inside, but then it appears pretty steep once inside the walls. I've heard mention of one elevator. Are there elevators from beneath the walls because one elevator would solve so many problems!
Any information on Pian d'Ovile would be greatly appreciated because it doesn't look like a normal lot. On Google Maps it doesn't appear as if you get tickets at a gate like in the other lots. There's a crowded lot next to it, and one on top that looks to be reached from the side and not by entering the opening. There also appears to be a sign that says autos powered by gas aren't allowed. I've read reports of people using it, but another site lists it as a "private" parking lot. I'm so confused!
If this lot isn't a possibility, and it doesn't appear to be one, what lot is most likely the best to avoid long, uphill climbs? Also, it seems possible, but what is the general opinion on pulling over near the Pian d'Ovile lot, having my friend transfer into his wheelchair, and me driving back down and parking in the San Francesco lot and walking up to meet him? Wheeling DOWN to that lot is NOT going to be a problem!