Universal Housing Design – Let’s Get Going!

UD-logo-200x200Edited transcript from live captioning of Margaret Ward’s presentation at the Australian Universal Design Conference 2014.

Synopsis: While major industry players support the Livable Housing Design Guidelines, their implementation in mass market housing is not yet evident. This presentation takes the perspective of the Australian Network for Universal Housing Design and plots the history from the setting up of the National Dialogue for Universal Housing Design, to the development of the Livable Housing Design Guidelines, and the achievements to date of Livable Housing Australia.  It asks the question – what more can be done to progress universal housing design in Australia?

Margaret Ward Presentation transcript in PDF format or in Word document

Margaret Ward slideshow PDF 1MB   


Making universal design a reality – confronting affordability

Head and shoulders pic of Kay Saville-Smith
Kay Saville-Smith

Edited transcript from live captioning of Kay Saville-Smith’s keynote presentation at the Australian Universal Design Conference 2014.

Synopsis: The Christchurch earthquakes which flattened much of the city provided an opportunity to start from scratch and implement some of the good design ideas, including universal design, that have been around for some time.  However, this UD-logo-200x200has not happened and there are many reasons for this, not least of which is the stance of the insurance industry. The issue of affordability is a complex one, as it is a market driven issue where the actual cost of the building is not the main issue.  Universal design and affordability can co-exist, but there are many attitudinal barriers and well-worn arguments touted in the industry that say it cannot be done.

Kay Saville-Smith Keynote Presentation transcipt in PDF or Transcript in Word

Kay Saville-Smith Keynote Slideshow PDF 3MB   


Panel Session: Universal Design – Everyone, Everywhere

UD-logo-200x200Participants in this panel session at the Universal Design Conference were Kathryn Greiner (perspective of older people), Nikke Gladwin (perspective of children), and Mark Relf (perspective of people with disability). The session was chaired by Andrew Buchanan.

Panel Session Day 2 Transcript  PDF

Panel Session Day 2 Transcript Word

Kathryn Greiner Presentation Synopsis:  The focus of Kathryn Greiner’s presentation is on older people, but also recognising what is good for older people is also good for people of all ages. Attitudes to older people need to change so that there are more inclusive behaviours by others in the community. Unfriendly or thoughtless behaviours can be a barrier to being more active and involved as we age, and this is where engagement with the private sector is critical. Also needed are toolkits and information to help people understand why behaviours need to change, and this applies particularly to the private sector so that they can benefit from the upcoming baby boomer cohort, as well as the baby boomers themselves.

Kathryn Greiner’s speaking notes PDF

Nikke Gladwin Presentation Synopsis:  Children are often forgotten in planning and neighbourhood design, yet they have a wealth of information and idea ready to be tapped, if only they are asked.  Child Friendly by Design is a projects are collaborative projects where children and young people are involved in community engagement processes for the benefit of everyone.

Mark Relf Presentation Synopsis:  The evolution of accessibility and universal design covers some fifty years and several legal instruments, standards, state planning policies, and local government ordinances.  This presentation provides a potted history of the evolution of accessibility and universal design and helps us make sense of the situation today.

Mark Relf’s Panel Presentation slides PDF 6MB

The House that Chris Built: a user’s perspective

UD-logo-200x200Edited transcript from live captioning of Chris Nicholls’ presentation.

Synopsis:  Chris discusses the design and construction of his family home from the perspective of a wheelchair user.  He outlines some of the problems with applying standards such as AS1428 in homes and explains why some design features, which are often referred to as disability features, are not necessarily needed by every wheelchair user or person with a disability. He also explains which features were important and why. The slideshow has many instructive photographs.

Chris Nicholls Presentation Transcript  PDF

Chris Nicholls Presentation Transcript  Word

Chris Nicholls slideshow PDF 23MB

Local Government: friend or foe in the quest for universal housing design?

UD-logo-200x200Noelle Hudson’s edited transcript from the live captioning.

Synopsis: Noelle outlines her research at local government level in Queensland to find out the degree of support for introducing universal design in housing.  There were some surprising results with some councils being supportive, but changing their minds later on, and others that were against it.  Noelle provides some insights into some of the local government thinking on this topic in Queensland.

Noelle Hudson Presentation Transcript PDF

Noelle Hudson Presentation Transcript Word

Noelle Hudson slideshow PDF  500kb

From Adaptable to Universal Design

UD-logo-200x200From Adaptable to Universal Design: Implications for housing usability, marketability, and innovation

Dr Joanne Quinn provided an overview of the research on various approaches to inclusive design – adaptable, universal, flexible, visitable, and the newer Livable Housing Design Guidelines. She discusses the pros and cons of each.

The transcript is not publicly available due to research publication restrictions.

You can contact Joanne at University of New South Wales for more information on her research with the Enabling Built Environments Program.

Where are all the children?

UD-logo-200x200Assoc Prof Lisa Stafford‘s presentation is titled, “Where are all the children? Positioning children, young people with a disability and their families in the universal design agenda”.

Synopsis: Much of the discourse around universal design assumes an adult perspective and consequently children are left out and become invisible in the designs.  Lisa argues that we must include children, including those with a disability and their families if we are to truly be representative in our policies and practices in universal design, and not consider them as an afterthought.

Lisa Stafford Presentation Transcript PDF

Lisa Stafford Presentation Transcript Word

Fair Play: Inclusion begins in the playground

UD-logo-200x200Edited transcript of Bec Ho and Justine Perkins presentation.

Synopsis: Including children with a disability in outdoor play is possible with some careful design planning. All children benefit from learning through play and using outdoor activities to socialise and interact with each other regardless of their level of capability. Bec and Justine provide insightful case studies and an overview of the Touched by Olivia Foundation.

Bec Ho, Justine Perkins Presentation Transcript PDF

Bec Ho, Justine Perkins Presentation Transcript Word

Bec Ho, Justine Perkins Slideshow PDF 9MB


Slip Resistance According to Goldilocks

UD-logo-200x200Richard Bowman adopts an alien excluded perspective to outline the issues associated with the design and auditing of slip resistant facilities.  He says that slips are often misreported and thus overrepresented as a cause of falls, where many such falls are not necessarily associated with slippery surfaces.  There are many factors to consider in preventing slip-initiated falls and not all of these can be captured in an industry standard.  Cleaning materials and wear and tear over time all contribute to the complexity of the challenge of providing adequately sustainable slip resistant inclusive access.

Richard Bowman slideshow  PDF  7MB

Abstract: The Goldilocks principle dictates that liveable housing should have flooring that is just right. In terms of slip resistance this means not too slippery and not too rough (so as to be difficult to clean or likely to cause stumbles). This enlightened view runs contrary to some safety experts, who simply believe that specifying greater slip resistance is the effective panacea. People want to live in safe homely environments, not with senselessly mandated semi-industrial flooring.  
Continue reading Slip Resistance According to Goldilocks

Inclusion a Necessity not an Option

UD-logo-200x200Geoff Barker’s presentation highlights the importance of community engagement and involvement. Using a case study of a project in the Northern Territory with the local Aboriginal people he shows how careful planning, and involvement in all stages from initial concept to implementation, is important for the success of a project. 

Geoff Barker Presentation Transcript  PDF

Geoff Barker Presentation Transcript Word

Geoff Barker slideshow   PDF  4MB