Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Austin City Council considers adding accessibility elements to building codes

Aaron Scarborough

Today the Austin, Texas, City Council will consider adding some new disability accessibility elements to the building code there, CBS 42 reports.

The proposed codes would mean "all new homes and duplexes would have reinforced walls in first floor bathrooms so grab bars could be installed, that bathroom door would be at least 30 inches wide and one door to the outside would be at least 36 inches wide."

Wheelchair user Aaron Scarborough told CBS 42 that making homes accessible allows people with disabilities more independence.

"You have to have more room than a person walking because you got to turn. You’ve got to have a turning radius," Scarborough said. "I need to have somebody with me, if that tells you anything. It’s very hard by myself. I should be able to do most whatever I want by myself, that’s the goal."

You can read the ordinance here.