Article 9, ‘Accessibility’, of the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, states that: “all parties shall take appropriate measures to ensure that people with disabilities are treated equally to others”. In the built environment, the idea of Universal Design addresses equality as the design of buildings, products or environments that are accessible to all people, regardless of age, disability or other factors.
With the ambition to create the most accessible office building in theworld, The Disabled People’s Organization Denmark has developed and built their headquarters in Taastrup, Denmark, which succeeds in shedding light on the need of universal design in the future.
Besides bringing the different disabled people’s organizations in Denmark together in a welcoming setting, the building sets an example of integrated accessible design.
Creating a working environment which is equal for all, regardless of disabilities, the team focused on promoting integrated low-tech solutions rather than add-on design. The wayfinding system addresses multiple senses with sound and tactile detailing, and simple recognizable guiding features make it easier for visually or cognitively impaired to find their way.
The team has worked with the detailing from the beginning of the design phase, making e.g. the tactical guiding paths a beautiful and integrated part of the staircase design.