Universal Design aims to provide useable space planning for people of all abilities and ages. Another growing trend is Inclusive design which is similarly creating spaces that are more accessible to everyone. Accessibility options can also be highly personalized for individuals with specific needs. Imagine a world where any guest could feel comfortable using your home? Also, when choosing to remain in your existing home as you age, accessible design is an important consideration.
One of the most important rooms to consider when creating accessibility is the kitchen. Being able to safely prepare and clean up after meals is one of the primary considerations of the accessible kitchen. Mobility is usually an important concern for current and future needs. The following measurements are ideal for accessibility to all. Hardware and fixtures can also improve functionality. Accessible kitchens can include design details that accommodate children too, as universal design wants people of all ages to have greater accessibility.
Facets of Your Accessible Kitchen: Mobility and Convenience
Doorways and Clearance: Between 36-42” wide, with pocket doors, or swing clear hinges, and lever door handles. Clearance for a pass-through kitchen is 40” while U-shaped layouts require 60” of clearance.
Cabinets: Cabinet height can be individualized, but motorized, adjustable cabinets are the ultimate in universal design in a kitchen for multiple users. Swing up doors with hinges at the top and touch open doors are ideal for accessible kitchens. Lower cabinetry like a lazy Susan, or cabinets with pull outs, can help keep users from having to lean down into cabinetry to reach items.