One in four Americans lives with a disability, yet it’s estimated that less than 6% of the national housing supply is designed to be accessible. As housing communities are created, they don’t often meet the diverse accessibility and inclusion needs of people with disabilities. While basic code and compliance measures require specific features, no holistic set of guidelines and standards define an implementable, progressive approach to design truly accessible and inclusive housing communities. Equipping designers, builders, and developers with a set of standards and a new framework for disability-forward design, that highlights accessibility and inclusion, can drastically improve housing quality and housing options for all people.
As a part of our Getting Started Guide, this article is intended for people and organizations who would like to build disability-forward housing but need a partner to successfully execute their project idea. In this article, we provide context and common language used in the field to build your understanding so you can choose an appropriate development partner that will help you execute a housing community you envision.
This overview walks you step-by-step through hosting your own inclusive community workshops for your housing project. It covers the type of workshops, who and how to invite participants, and accessibility of process and materials with tips and best practices throughout. This resource will give you practical insight into anchoring community workshops in inclusion and helping participants feel comfortable, welcomed and valued.
26% of people have a disability, yet it’s estimated that less than 6% of the national housing supply is designed to be accessible. The Housing Design Standards for Accessibility and Inclusion consist of over 300 Elements, which reflect design operations and choices that include development strategies, building features, or operational policies that support accessibility and inclusion. The Design Standards organize elements by Design Categories, Impact Areas, and Additional Benefits. Click to download the standards and a self-certification tool.
A home's level of accessibility affects each person’s ability to live healthy, meaningful lives. As disability-forward housing advocates, it is important to understand how housing is designed and how it is made accessible. Key topics include: how housing is designed, Building Codes, building codes and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Universal Design, and Human-centered design.