Breaking Down Barriers:
the USA Experience
Starting to develop the project of the Center for Administrative Services of the Darnitsky District, our team began to intensively study the technical literature on the organization of the barrier-free space. We wanted this project not only meet the requirements of the domestic building standards but also approach to the world standards of public spaces.
We connected to specialized civic organizations, which repeatedly advised us on certain aspects of the planning. Later, it was useful to us when we started to work on the Center for Social Services, as well as on the school of the New Educational Platform in Brovary.
We are confident that the responsibility of each designer will allow our country to approximate those European principles, and the values of developed countries, which we have been heard from high tribunes.
We think many of our colleagues will find one of the main policy documents in the United States: The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) useful in this context. The act, that was enacted in 1990, prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability. The latest version of these standards was released by the U.S. Department of Justice in 2010.
Unlike ordinary legal documents, the American Disability Act is an example of simplicity and clarity. Moreover, it has visual graphic material that helps architects in the development of the project.
Undoubtedly, the rules and standards of the organization of the US public space are not mandatory for Ukraine. However, it can become a good tradition to be ahead of the requirements and do many times more for people who are literally constrained in the movement in our country.
The principles of equality and free access for all categories of citizens should enter the subconscious of designers in our country. At a minimum, they became an inviolable rule for the AIMM GROUP team.