Accessible Housing and Universal Design
What is accessible housing?
- Accessible housing is the term for housing which is accessible and functional for a person with a disability. The home can be designed with the individual's disability in mind. For example, a house for someone who is blind and walking would have different accessibility features than a person who lives and performs from a wheelchair level.
- A home that is not accessible can be made accessible through recommendations by an Occupational Therapist\ related to the individual's functional needs and physical abilities in coordination with a designer/construction expert who can determine how the home can be modified, structurally.
- Modifications may be as simple as adding a ramp to a front door or grab bars in a tub but may be as complex as building or adding an addition on the home to provide a bedroom and bathroom that suits the individual or a kitchen re-design with wheelchair accessible counters, sink, fridge, stove, microwave, dishwasher and cupboards.
What is Universal Design?
- Universal design is the design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design.
- The intent of universal design is to simplify life for everyone by making products, communications, and the built environment more usable by as many people as possible at little or no extra cost. Universal design benefits people of all ages and abilities.
Universal Design definitions attained from: http://www.design.ncsu.edu/cud/about_ud/about_ud.htm