Officials from Miami International Airport (MIA) and the University of Miami-Nova Southeastern Center for Autism and Related Disabilities (CARD) recently hosted a grand opening ceremony for MIA’s Multi-Sensory Room, a quiet area for young passengers with cognitive or developmental disabilities such as autism that provides a relaxing environment during the travel experience.
Two families with special needs children were also in attendance for the grand opening.
Located just beyond Concourse D TSA security checkpoint No. 4, the room includes sensory-soothing fixtures such as an aquatic bubble tub, wall puzzles, cushioned seats and a light projector, all within a dimly lit space. The room, which will be open seven days a week from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., was created through a partnership between MIA and the Miami Beat Team from Leadership Miami’s Class of 2018, in consultation with UM-NSU CARD. Three Miami Beat Team members are MIA employees.
“The Multi-Sensory Room is our latest effort to make the travel experience easier and more enjoyable for families with special needs children,” said Lester Sola, MIA director and CEO. “We applaud the Miami Beat Team and the UM-NSU CARD for their efforts to bring this project from concept to reality.”
The Multi-Sensory Room is part of MIA’s Airport Instruction and Readiness (MIAair) program which provides tours and materials to families with special needs children so that anyone, regardless of his or her disability, can experience the magic and wonder of flight.