Designing homes for inclusion and independence

Front cover of the guidelines showing three people standing and one in a wheelchair looking out over a beach scene. Designing homes for inclusion and independence.The aim of the NDIS is to create independence and inclusion. And that includes providing suitable homes in mainstream settings. So no more segregated group homes, but more homes in regular neighbourhoods. The Summer Foundation’s guide for designing homes for inclusion and independence is a great reference for designers and builders. They are keen to build sector capacity and share knowledge and resources.

Federal funding for NDIS recipients has increased demand for specialists in the accessible housing field. To assist designers and builders produce specialist housing, Summer Housing has produced design guidelines, Designing for Inclusion and Independence – An Explanatory Guide to support the Briefing and Design of Accessible Housing

While the guide is focused on specialist disability accommodation (SDA housing), the guide is also useful for mainstream housing if read in conjunction with the Livable Housing Design Guidelines

This guide is a practical tool to develop the brief, design and specifications of high quality accessible housing. Key considerations are social inclusion, usability, homelike environments, amenity and cost-efficiency. The guide includes checklists as well as practice tips and includes current design benchmarks such as the Livable Housing Australia Guidelines, and Specialist Disability Accommodation Design Category requirements. The guide has six parts:

      • Introduction
      • Part A: Spatial Planning – Typology
      • Part B: Spatial Planning – Accessible Dwelling Elements
      • Part C: Construction and Detailing – Building Elements
      • Part D: Construction and Detailing – System Elements
      • Appendices

The Summer Foundation also has a guide to specialist disability accommodation for providers. It’s an overview of the role of SDA and individual plans.