The Site

The criteria for selecting residential sites in general should apply. | These criteria cover economy, topography, subsoil conditions, and existing utility services. Sites subject to industrial smoke, traffic hazards, excessive noise, or polluted air should be avoided.|

The site should allow for development so that structures can be oriented to give residents Ihe advantages of local climate

Odd or irregularly shaped sites should be carefully evaluated based on amount of usable land and cost of its maintenance.

If the community has restrictive ordinances, zoning, or other local controls which would adversely affect the proposed development in a particularly good location and site, waivers should be investigated. In applying for such waivers, il is important to remember that the housing is to be residential, designed for in-

Housmg for the Physically Impmrad, Department ot Housing and Urban Development Washington, D C , 1968

dependent living. Il is neither an institution nor a nursing home.

An important special consideration is slope of the site. For the physically impaired, a comparatively flat site is needed, Steeper and more rugged sites may be used but with doubtful success Such sites should be evaluated in terms of Ihe costs of any special improvements required to serve the limitations and needs of the tenants. Examples of such extra costs would be those for constructing retaining walls to create useful fiat outdoor sitting and resting areas or constructing gently sloping pedestrian ramps throughout the site. Extra maintenance costs (upkeep of banks, lawn areas, and in some climates snow removal, etc.} may result in increased rents.

It is important to have outlooks, both natural and created, thai provide interest or beauty and contribute to pleasant living. Many tenants will undoubtedly spend more time at home than would a comparable group of nonimpaired individuals. Views of such things as wooded areas, hills, night-lights, and distant traffic; of planes, boats, (rains and automobiles are desirable, and count as positive factors in site selection.

Consideration should be given lo the existing and proposed approaches to the site (street improvement, widening; surface; sidewalks) and public utilities.


Access All building entrances to be used by the tenants should be approached by paved walks, with nonakid Surface, sloped for drainage, but not over 1 in 20 (or 5 percent). Stops should not bit used.

Landing platforms at all building entrance doors should be level, sloped only as required for drainage. The platform width should be at least 1 ft beyond the door jambs Platforms should be at least 3 ft deep it doors swing in, and 5 ft deep if doors swing out. but never less than 3 ft beyond the edge of the fully open door. (See fig. t.)

Romps Most wheelchair users can negotiate a ramp sloped 5 percent or less without assistance. Steeper ramps limit independent chair use and should never be used. They are hezard-ous not only to wheelchair users but also to parsons with artificial limbs and to the elderly. Rump surfaces should be fireproof and nonslip. (See Fig. 2.)

If the vertical height requires two ramps to achieve the properly graded slope, the ramps should be no longer than 20 tt, separated by a level platform at least 5 ft-6 in. long, to pro¬ę vide ample rest space. Such two-run ramps may be in n straight line; howevor, a more desirable and safer arrangement would be a 90 or 180 turn at the platform.

When more than two ramp lengths are required, the descent should be broken by turns to be negotiated on level platforms.

The recommended width for a one-way ramp is 3 ft between handrails. At least 6 ft should be provided for two-way circulation.

Hundrails and anchors should support 250 lb for 5 min; they should extend at least 12 in. (24 in. is preferable) beyond the beginning and end of the ramp to assist persons with poor vision, and they should be returned to a wall or an upright post tor safely.

Handrails installed specifically for children should be at a height of 24 in. Local codes or special safety objectives might necessitate the installation of additional, higher rails.

Fig. 2 Street-curb ramp far wheelchair.

Fig. 2 Street-curb ramp far wheelchair.

Pedestrian Walks Pedestrian walks at street curbs should be ramped. The ramp should not protrudo onto the street but be indented into the curb; it should have a nonslip surface colored orange, or curb jambs should be colored to assist those with poor vision. Greater slopes than 2 in 12 could hinder wheelchair use,

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Homeowners Guide To Landscaping

Homeowners Guide To Landscaping

How would you like to save a ton of money and increase the value of your home by as much as thirty percent! If your homes landscape is designed properly it will be a source of enjoyment for your entire family, it will enhance your community and add to the resale value of your property. Landscape design involves much more than placing trees, shrubs and other plants on the property. It is an art which deals with conscious arrangement or organization of outdoor space for human satisfaction and enjoyment.

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