Access consultants are crucial package as part of successful inclusive building design. Every successful building project needs good quality people in all departments, designing accessible buildings is no different. The role of an Architect is to quite simply design effective spaces, buildings with good use of lighting, buildings that serve their purpose. The role of a structural engineer is to ensure that a building will be structurally sound. The role of a fire specialist will ensure that the building is safe to use and that people are able to evacuate in the event of a fire. An access consultant helps a design team to ensure that the proposed building is inclusive as possible.
There are many new buildings throughout London at the moment, including new landmarks where it is evident that an access consultant has not been part of the design process. White grab rails within white tiled accessible toilets anyone? Fully glazed areas with no manifestations? Lifts with no audio? No colour schemes to aid people with impaired vision to navigate?
It is cheaper and easier to maximise inclusivity whilst a project is on a drawing board.
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