OUTSIDE THE BUILDINGS

RETURN to the BUILDINGS MENU.

ENTERING THE BUILDING.

INSIDE THE BUILDING.

FINDING THE BUILDING

The route to the site should be considered from appropriate start points. Particularly important locations, such as council offices and town centres, should be signposted from the edge of the town. The same wording should be used along the route - eg. town centre shouldn't change to civic centre unless they are very different. It should be made clear when the town centre or other location has been reached. A group of shops does not necessarily mean that you have reached the town centre.

Similarly the routes close to the building should be carefully considered, from the viewpoint of drivers, pedestrians, wheelchair users and people with vision impairments.

The building itself should be well signed so that people know that they have arrived. It should also be clear where the entrance is.

Any conditions, such as parking rules or opening times, should be clear at the point where they are needed, eg. parking rules should be clear at the entry to the site rather than by the building entrance, which will be seen when the car has already been parked.

DROP KERBS

As with signs, the routes to the building should be checked for accessibility. Drop kerbs should be present at suitable locations, with one on each side of a road and in positions where they are less likely to be blocked by parked vehicles. If in doubt where these should be, watch and ask the local users.

ASK THE ENGINEERS

If there is need for changes along the route, start by discussing them with the local council's engineers' department. Big changes may cost a lot and be difficult to introduce but many problems can be overcome with small changes, which can be added into existing work programmes and be dealt with in the near future.

Drop kerb details are dealt with in the Moving Around/Pavements section of this web site.

OBSTACLES and HAZARDS

The routes to and around the building should be considered for potential obstacles and hazards. Doors and windows which can open into a route are particularly dangerous. Bins, seats, poles and columns can provide unexpected obstacles for people with visual impairments, particularly when they are in the direct line of the route. Seats should be considered as if they are occupied, so that people's legs become an additional hazard.

Plants and foliage can give a nasty shock if they overhang a route, particularly if they overhang at face height and there is nothing below for a long cane to detect their presence.

Low obstacles, such as bollards or edge fencing, can be dangerous, particularly if they are below knee height, so that a person would fall over them rather than bump into them. Bumping into them is not nice either.