Accessibility is crucial with commercial architecture. There should be no barriers that can prevent anyone from using the property, whether they work here or visit. The design should consider what extra help people may need to move around. This could be rails, ramps, signs, or even floor or stair covers.
What to plan for?
The thing you need to remember when it comes to access is that people can have very different needs. You will have to plan for all kinds of disabilities, including those that affect mobility, visual or auditory abilities, and communication or processing information.
In terms of physical mobility, you must think about how easy it is for people to get to the property and move in it. You will need to plan for wheelchairs, avoiding steps and stairs, and prioritising ramps. You also have to make sure the facilities are sufficient. This includes lifts and corridors with enough space for the chairs and bathrooms.
Good commercial architecture will include all kinds of helpful audio visual cues. These can help people with sight, vision and hearing disabilities, making it easier for them to move around a property.
It is also important to think about people with learning difficulties. You need to ensure you don’t go over the top with the information; instead go with simple instructions and clear signs. To address barriers with communication, you must make sure that spaces won’t be overly loud and full of clutter.
Inside and outside
You need to ensure you prioritise accessibility both inside and outside of a property. You have to extend the latter to include any car parks, the approach to the building, and entrances. There must be enough space in all of these areas. You must also think about what extra help people need.
Design commercial architecture with us
At Coffey Architects we know how vital accessibility is today. It ensures that buildings don’t exclude people or make it unsafe for them. We can help our clients to create new properties or change the current design. This will make them more accessible.
So, if you have any questions for us or would like support, please get in touch. We are happy to talk about projects, including commercial architecture, homes, and public spaces. You can also learn more on our website.