Use Lighting to Make Your Space Accessible and Comfortable For Everyone

by Feb 24, 2022

Home » The Disability Inclusion Blog » Use Lighting to Make Your Space Accessible and Comfortable For Everyone

Lighting plays a significant role in the overall design of a space. It provides illumination, highlights certain features, and creates a specific mood. When it comes to universal design, lighting is critical, making spaces more accessible and comfortable for everyone.

Four Lighting Ideas That CanBetter Support Universal Design

  1. Start with Natural Lighting. When designing lighting for a space, starting with daylight is essential. Natural light has many benefits for people across all spectrums of ability. It can help improve moods, increase productivity, and boost Vitamin D levels. Plus, it’s free! So, try incorporating as much natural light into your design as possible.
  2. Variable Lighting. It’s critical to remember that everyone responds to light in different ways. Some people need higher light levels to see clearly, while others find bright lights too harsh and overwhelming. Variable (dimmable) lighting, which allows the end-user to adjust the brightness to meet their specific needs, is an essential component of Universal Design
  3. Glare Control. Glare is an essential consideration in any lighting design, but especially so when designing for universal access. Glare can create a sense of visual discomfort and make it difficult to see clearly. This can be a particular issue for people with low vision or sensitivity to light. Eliminating glare and using glare controls such as shades, blinds, and light fixtures with hoods can help create a more comfortable and welcoming environment for everyone.
  4. Simple Switches. When designing for universal access, it is vital to keep things simple. This means using large buttons with intuitive labels and avoiding complex designs that might be difficult to navigate. 

Consider the needs of everyone using the space, including people with disabilities. Using these strategies, you can create a lighting design that is beautiful and accessible for all.

Need help getting started? Reach out to my team. We can evaluate your situation and provide tips for creating a lighting scheme that is both practical and visually appealing.

Andrew D. Houghton

Andrew D. Houghton

President, Disability Inclusion Solutions

Nationally Recognized Accessibility Expert. Creating Innovative Disability Inclusion Solutions. Certified DOBE.


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