Very simple structural modifications can make your house very suitable for the physically challenged
and especially for the elderly,children and expecting mothers.
We get the experts views on how it can be done.
People with physical conditions are many in number in our country and they need to be accepted with kindness and as our equal. The awareness of constructing houses for such people is slowly developing in big cities. Developers are becoming very keen on providing the apt housing solutions for the physically challenged or people with partial disabilities. This particular phenomenon of constructing houses for disable people has started stirring up widespread attention these days.
Meena Kapoor a Mumbai resident says,"My son had an accident roughly two years ago and his life changed overnight. He is on the wheel chair for a couple of years now and we have modified our house as much as possible to help him handle his chores effectively. Even the electrical switches have been moved up to a certain height so that he could access them by himself. In the bathroom, we have installed grip-rod for him to be safe. There are other improvements that we are thinking to make to make his life more comfortable".
The necessity to adopt universal design principles
Meena’s words clearly send a message out to the society that even the public places have got to be designed in such a way that the disable people can be as independent as others. Places such as theatres, parks and restaurants should help the physically challenged to be a part of the society in every respect. To achieve this, the architects and designers have to come up with unique construction standards. This will help buyers to go for the right choice if they have elderly people with limited mobility or children with different abilities.
Abhishek Ray, principal architect, Matrika Design Collaborative says,"If proper standards are followed while developing houses for the physically disabled, we will be able to achieve our objective in a very short time and more than half our challenge would be met with easily. Mr.Ray has received many accolades in finding solutions for the physically challenged in the society.
Simple measures for comfortable living:
Dr Ajay Monga, professor of architecture, DCR University of Science and Technology, Murthal, Haryana says,"People with limited mobility should be given absolute comfort inside homes and to do that, houses should be constructed without any structural barrier. Even shelves and cupboards should be designed in such a way that people do not have to bend excessively to reach an item. In the same manner, toilets can be designed to suit the needs of the elderly.
Rays says that disable people should be able to access amenities in a community without any difficulty. Parking spaces, for instance, should be designed to give them more space and comfort. The clubhouse should have the necessary means for the disabled to spend time comfortably. Proper standards are to be set in every manner to make this work.
Tips to make homes friendly for the differently-abled