Architectural accessibility is my focus and my passion. We're all aging, disabilities can occur at any time, for anyone, and the built environment must keep pace with population changes. Good Design is simply Universal Design, but does anyone really know what that means? I wrote The Accessible Home: Designing for All Ages and Abilities (Taunton Press, 2012) to explore this issue. The book showcases architect-designed homes around the continent designed for and with people who live daily with a variety of disabilities. It's changed the way I design and how I work with clients.
Universal design means pathways for people using wheelchairs or rolling luggage and baby carriages. It's a kitchen where someone with poor vision or arthritis can cook great meals. It's a bathroom designed to prevent accidents as well as to attend to personal hygiene after an accident. It's a living space where someone who is hard-of-hearing can follow a group conversation. It's design that is adaptable, visitable, and useable. It's acoustics, ergonomics, smart hardware/appliances and responsive design. Whether it's seamlessly integrated or exuberantly expressed, accessible features bring grace to the activities of everyday living.