The transcription has errors. A more accurate rendering of this segment would be
Cities can be difficult places to navigate at the best of times. But for some with disabilities, they can turn into gauntlets. With nearly 200 million people globally experiencing a severe disability, stairs, curbs, train gaps, even crosswalks can be impossible.
As katatahito notes in the comments, the (ph) marker indicates that the transcriber was uncertain of what was said, and attempted to represent the approximate sounds phonetically. It's possible that CNN's transcription software was thrown off by the presenter's British accent.
Gauntlet is a reference to a medieval punishment known as the gantlope, in which someone must run between two rows of men, who strike physical blows or lashes upon him. Over time, the word gantlope became conflated with the word gauntlet, an armored glove, and the punishment became known as running the gauntlet.
In modern usage, running the gauntlet can refer to any unpleasant experience at the hands of a series of people, and more generally, the gauntlet is the place where such an experience would take place. Thus, the presenter is saying that as difficult as cities can be for most people to navigate, for people with disabilities, trying to navigate a city involves facing one indignity after another.