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Creating affordable and sustainable, nature-integrated homes for independent living
Universal Design
Seven Principles of Universal Design

The following seven principles of Universal Design are reproduced with permission from the Center for Universal Design, North Carolina State University:

PRINCIPLE ONE: Equitable Use
The design is useful and marketable to people with diverse abilities.

PRINCIPLE TWO: Flexibility in Use
The design accommodates a wide range of individual preferences and abilities.

PRINCIPLE THREE: Simple and Intuitive Use
Use of the design is easy to understand, regardless of the user's experience, knowledge, language skills, or current concentration level.

PRINCIPLE FOUR: Perceptible Information
The design communicates necessary information effectively to the user, regardless of ambient conditions or the user's sensory abilities.

PRINCIPLE FIVE: Tolerance for Error
The design minimizes hazards and the adverse consequences of accidental or unintended actions.

PRINCIPLE SIX: Low Physical Effort
The design can be used efficiently and comfortably and with a minimum of fatigue.

Size and Space for Approach and Use:
Appropriate size and space is provided for approach, reach, manipulation, and use regardless of user's body size, posture, or mobility.

Copyright © 1997 NC State University, 
The Center for Universal Design.

Universal Design.   BuildingCircles housing will utilize many principles of universal design.  These community homes will permit easier habitation for all, safe and more comfortable independent living for older adults, and less costly conversion to assisted living if that is needed. 

Universal design is an approach to design that focuses on how the wide range of people, at all stages of life, use space and products. 

The Center for Universal Design, defined "universal design" as 

"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." 

Also see 
RL Mace Universal Design Institute and 
Northwest Universal Design Council

BuildingCircles Community Home
- 2-Bedroom, 2-Bath, 1000 sq. ft. example -
Floor Plan by 
Nancy Henderson, AIA, LEED, AP
(click picture for printable version of floor plan)


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The Small Print:
This site is for educational purposes only.  It is not a substitute for professional consultation.  No claim is made or implied that the ideas, inventions, illustrations, and documents on this site are applicable to any housing, building, or land use project.  Nor does the site represent in any way consulting services of any kind.  Nothing on this site is an offer to sell, transfer, license, or use intellectual property.

Copyright (c) 2006-2010 by Robert Bornn and Laura Worth.  All rights reserved. 
BuildingCircles, LifeSense Institute, AdvancedGreen, and Creating affordable and sustainable, nature-integrated homes for independent living, and enchanted naturalism are trademarks of Robert Bornn and Laura Worth.

Renderings by Robert Bornn and Nancy Henderson, AIA, LEED, AP.
Floor plan by Nancy Henderson, AIA, LEED, AP.
Illustrative Site Plan Courtesy of Barbara Oakrock, Oakrock Design Studio

Photos by Robert Bornn
Web site by Laura Worth Web Design.