Universal Design

Overview

In 1990, The Americans with Disabilities Act became law of the land, ushering in regulations regarding accessibility and universal design. Our involvement with commercial projects over the last 20 years has afforded us a wealth of knowledge in how to create beautiful spaces that are equally functional and enjoyable for all, regardless of ability or age.

As a natural evolution of our long-standing interest of equality for all through design, in 2008 we expanded our focus in this field to the concepts of aging in place and “visit-ability”, developing our ever-evolving philosophy into our Your Home For A Lifetime™ Program. This program addresses options for remodeling existing homes, assisted living facilities, and veterans housing, as well as advocating for increased awareness of the need for Universal Design to ensure independence and enhance quality of life for all.

Our involvement in the concept of Aging in Place goes way beyond four walls and a roof over one’s head—it even includes such things as neighborhood stabilization, and championing increased mobility and affordable housing, all the while not willing to compromise design aesthetics. Our approach is a holistic one that is born out of knowing that doing the least needed to meet the letter of the law is not satisfactory!

"True independent living is achieved only through proactive universal design that complements our individual life styles and protects our quality of life. Being Proactive means freedom and specifically a freedom and willingness to embrace change assertively!"

-Raad Ghantous

Commercial

In many cases on commercial projects, conformity with The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements is addressed with an attitude of what can be the least done to meet the letter of the law. In our opinion, when this is the approach taken, we risk losing sight of the intent of the law, which is an inclusive philosophy.

Universal Design is the alternative way of thinking about accessibility, advocating that ALL spaces should be equally accessible for ALL users. This approach beyond the minimum requirements of The ADA has real benefits, such as:

Residential

In life, sooner or later, a house that was built for the “average” family simply does not work. According to AARP, 82% of homeowners surveyed overwhelmingly preferred “Aging in Place” to alternatives, which means living in their homes safely, independently, and comfortably, regardless of age or ability.

If you are like the majority of Americans, you want to live in a familiar environment throughout your maturing years, and towards that end, you may want to think about:

During a consultation, we will discuss these important issues and the low-cost modification solutions we can provide to make your workspace more equally accessible, and your house Your Home for a Lifetime.

CONTACT RG&A for a consultation