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Norms for differently-abled persons for building refer to the standards and guidelines set by governments and organizations to ensure that buildings are accessible and safe for persons with disabilities.

  • In all public buildings/ places of public gathering, the level of the roads, access paths and parking areas shall be described in the plan, along with specification of the materials.
  • The specified facilities in public buildings for differently-abled persons shall be as follows:-

1) Parking

For parking of vehicles of differently-abled people the following provisions shall be made:-

  1. surface parking for two car spaces shall be provided, near the entrance, for the differently-abled persons, with maximum travel distance of 30 metres from building entrance;
  2. the width of parking bay shall be minimum 3.6 metres;
  3. information stating that the space is reserved for wheel chair users shall be conspicuously displayed; and
  4. guiding floor materials shall be provided or a device which guides the visually impaired persons, with audible signals or other devices which serve the same purpose, shall be provided.

2) Entry / Exit

Every building shall have at least one entrance accessible to the differentlyabled and shall be indicated by proper signage. This entrance shall be approachable through a ramp together with the stepped entry.

  1. Ramped approach- Ramp shall be finished with non slippery material to enter the building. Minimum width of ramp shall be 1.5 metres with maximum gradient 1:12, length of ramp shall not exceed 9.0 metres having 0.8 metres high handrail on both sides extending 0.3 metres beyond top and bottom of the ramp. Minimum gap from the adjacent wall to the handrail shall be 5 cms.
  2. Stepped approach- For stepped approach size of tread shall not be less than 0.3 metres and maximum riser shall be 0.15 metres. Provision of 0.8 metres high handrail on both sides of the stepped approach similar to the ramped approach shall be made.
  3. Exit/ entrance door- Minimum clear opening of the entrance door shall be 0.9 metres and it shall not be provided with a step that obstructs the passage of a wheel chair user.
  4. Entrance landing- Entrance landing shall be provided adjacent to the ramp, with the minimum dimension 1.8 metres x 2.0 metres. The entrance landing that adjoin the top end of a slope shall be provided with floor materials to attract the attention of the visually impaired persons (limited to coloured floor material whose colour and brightness is conspicuously surrounding floor material that emit different sound to guide visually impaired persons, hereinafter referred to as “guiding floor material”). Finishes shall have a nonslip surface with a texture traversable by a wheel chair. Kerbs, wherever provided shall blend to a common level.

3) Corridor connecting the entrance/exit for the differently-abled

The corridor connecting the entrance/exit for differently-abled leading directly outdoor to a place where information concerning the overall use of the specified building can be provided to visually impaired persons either by a person or by signs, shall be provided as follows:

  1. guiding floor materials shall be provided or devices that emit sound to guide visually impaired persons;
  2. the minimum width of corridor shall not be less than 1.5 metres;
  3. in case there is a difference of level, slope-ways shall be provided with a slope of 1:12;
  4. handrails shall be provided for ramps/slope-ways.

4) Stair-ways

One of the stair-ways near the entrance/ exit, for the use of differently-abled, shall have the following provisions:-

  1. the minimum width shall be 1.35 metres;
  2. height of the riser shall not be more than 0.15 metres and width of the tread 0.30 metre. The steps shall not have abrupt (square) nosing;
  3. maximum number of risers on a flight shall be limited to 12;
  4. handrails shall be provided on both sides.

5) Lifts

Wherever lift is required as per Code, provision of at least one lift shall be made for the wheel chair users, with the following cage dimensions, recommended for passenger lift of 13 persons capacity by the Bureau of Indian Standards:-

  • Clear internal depth 1.1. metres.
  • Clear internal width 2.0 metres.
  • Entrance door width 0.9 metre.
  1. a handrail not less that then 0.6 metre long and 1.0 metre above floor level shall be fixed adjacent to the control panel;
  2. the lift lobby shall be of an inside measurement of 1.8 metres x 2.0 metres or more;
  3. the time of an automatically closing door shall be minimum 5 seconds and the closing speed shall not exceed 0.25 metre/ second;
  4. the interior of the cage shall be provided with a device that audibly indicates the floor. When the cage reaches on floor, it shall indicate that the door of the cage for entrance/ exit is either open or closed.

6) Toilets

One special water closet in a set of toilets shall be provided for the use of differently-abled, with essential provision of wash basin inside toilet near the entrance for the differently-abled. It shall have-

  1. the minimum size of 1.50 metres x 1.75 metres;
  2. minimum clear opening of the door of 0.90 metre and it shall swing out;
  3. suitable arrangement of vertical/horizontal handrails with 50mm clearance from the wall;
  4. at least 0.50 metre distance between the water closet seat and the floor.

7) Drinking Water

Suitable provision of drinking water shall be made for the differently-abled persons near the special toilet provided for them.

8) Designing for Children

In the building meant for the predominant use of children, the height of the handrail and other fittings and fixtures, shall suit the requirements of children.

These norms are essential to ensure that persons with disabilities can access and use buildings safely and independently. Governments and organizations are increasingly recognizing the importance of implementing these norms and investing in creating accessible and inclusive environments for everyone.

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