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Universal Design


According to Ron Mace, founder of the Center for Universal Design – it is “the design of products and environments to be usable by all people, to the greatest extent possible, without the need for adaptation or specialized design." Homes that have universal design features look like other homes. But they are much easier to use. View our Universal Design booklet here.


What makes a home "universal"? Put simply, everyone can use universal design! It doesn't matter if you are young or old. You could be short or tall, healthy or ill. You might have a disability. You may be a prize-winning athlete. Because of universal design, people who are very different can all enjoy the same home.


We pride ourselves in building homes that address the current and future needs of our customers and their guests. Visit our HazelGlen development where all of the homes incorporate UD standards and attributes.


Some of the more common universal design features include:

  • No-step covered entry to house from front door and garage. By eliminating step-ups, no one needs to use stairs to get into a universal home or into the home's main rooms.

  • Bedrooms, kitchens and baths are all located on one level, which is barrier-free.

  • Wide doorways. Doorways that are 32-36 inches wide let wheelchairs pass through. They also make it easy to move big things in and out of the house.

  • Wide hallways. Hallways should be 36-42 inches wide. That way, everyone and everything moves more easily from room to room.

  • Extra floor space. Everyone feel less cramped. And people in wheelchairs have more space to turn.

  • Lever door handles and rocker light switches are great for people with poor hand strength. But others like them too. Try using these devices when your arms are full of packages. You'll never go back to knobs or standard switches.

  • Switches, thermostats, and outlets set to heights easily reachable from the sitting position and with minimal stooping from the standing position.

  • Strategic placement of railings. Design for function as well as aesthetics. Contrast wall and railing color - consider railings on both sides of stairways.

  • Non-slip, no-curb showers optional at no additional cost.

  • Walk-in pantry easily converted to a mobility closet for potential elevator or storage of a mobility device (i.e. - wheelchair, scooter)

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