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Designing for Accessibility: Creating Spaces for All

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As a design+build company, it's essential to consider accessibility when creating commercial spaces. By designing with accessibility in mind, you can create spaces that are welcoming to everyone, including people with disabilities, the elderly, and anyone else who may have special requirements.

It is key to prioritize Ease of Movement. Creating clear paths of travel is crucial to ensuring that your space is easy to navigate for everyone. This includes ensuring that doorways, hallways, and other spaces are wide enough to accommodate wheelchair users and others with mobility impairments. Also, providing clear signage and tactile paving can help guide people with visual impairments. In addition, accessible parking spaces must be located close to the entrance and have ample space to accommodate vans with lifts or ramps. The parking lot should also have accessible pathways to the building entrance.

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It is important to also incorporate features that accommodate sensory needs that can help make your space more inclusive. For example, installing visual fire alarms or providing assistive listening devices can benefit people with hearing impairments. Also, including tactile cues in the flooring or walls can help guide people with visual impairments.

The use of restrooms is an important part of consideration when creating a commercial space. Restrooms must be accessible, including having enough space for wheelchair users to maneuver and grab bars that are positioned correctly. Also, sinks and soap dispensers must be easy to reach and operate for people with limited dexterity. Universal design principles aim to create spaces that are usable by everyone, regardless of their abilities. Examples include incorporating low-pile carpeting, using lever handles instead of knobs, and installing automatic doors.

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Designing for accessibility in commercial spaces not only benefits people with disabilities but also benefits businesses. Creating an accessible environment can attract a wider range of customers, improve customer satisfaction, and increase brand loyalty. By prioritizing accessibility in your designs, you can create a more inclusive space that supports the diverse needs of all individuals. Remember, accessibility is not just a legal requirement; it is an opportunity to create spaces that are truly inclusive.

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