Check out my building blog to learn more about construction for your home or office in Austin! David L. Traut, President, CAPS Certified (512)444-0097

Universal Design Construction in Austin/T-Square Company

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Tue, Sep 27, 2022 @ 12:09 PM

Universal Design Construction or inclusive construction is used when a homeowner is smartly planning for life changes within their home. The most significant advantage of using this innovative concept is that it smoothly prepares a home for Aging in Place. By gradually applying elements of Universal Design into periodic home remodeling projects, those specific home areas are Age in Place ready without being noticed until needed. The concept provides various human performance characteristics for people using spaces within their homes, including well-integrated usability features. These adaptations have a broad market appeal to everyone for achieving ease of use, safety, and convenience, accommodating an inevitable reality. The effects of aging and disease are tempered because adaptability is built into the design. The reality is that all people exist along a continuum of human performance as per their traits and characteristics, regardless of their age. A universal approach to design considers that everyone has varying degrees of ability and disability rather than someone who is either fully functional or disabled.

A universal design-build project is appealing to all users. When correctly applied, any home area will be accented universally with stylish function and appears virtually invisible. Bathrooms, kitchens, family rooms, and bedrooms will all benefit the homeowner once the principles of Universal Design are applied. Examples of increased usability provided by Universal Design include wider doorways and hallways, enhanced lighting, non-slip flooring, contrasting colors within rooms, more accessible electrical controls and devices, curb-less showers, lever door hardware, more pull-out shelves, and drawers over cabinet doors, varying cabinet top heights, and water faucets and controls operable by a single hand or closed fist.  Be advised, Universal design ideas do not strictly deal with accessibility or Aging in Place design. They do not implement precise ADA standards, but it offers flexibility to add accessories now and later to those planning or the end user. 

Universal Design construction and Aging in Place home modifications are available through T-Square Company in SW Austin, Texas. Each universal design/build project is customized to the homeowner's needs. Call 512-444-0097 today to prepare for the accessible second chapter of your life while remaining safe and secure in your existing home. T-Square Company will design and build an adapted living environment customized to your abilities. Whether your project concerns home modifications, an accessible addition or wing, or new construction, we can help you increase your accessibility. We have over three decades of building and remodeling experience practicing as a disability contractor for people with special needs. We want to help our clients be as self-sufficient and independent as possible by offering handicap accessible floor plans. Let us show you how to increase safety and accessibility within your living environment.

David L. Traut, CAPS (1636580), the president and owner of T-Square Company, is accredited in Universal Design in the United States and Australia. He has written many papers on the subject and is in the process of finishing a book called Age in Place at Home: Adapting the Home For All Generations. The book covers how Universal Design avoids today's problematic living situations by traditional home's association with status-quo building concepts. Universal Design offers a common-sense gateway for increasing accessibility and adaptability in future homes. It will be available soon from Amazon.

   After so long a time of blogging, soap box deliveries, and conversations with my customers concerning the importance of Universal Design in the future of our home building industry, others have listened and agreed. I was humbled to find this article published in the Austin American Statesman. I take pride in the fact that people are beginning to see the importance of this very forward-thinking design concept.  May this article help to propel the needed universal building movement forward.

Accessible Homes Of Austin


The trend toward 'universal design' in homes
Tuesday, Jan 15, 2019 @ 3:57pm
By David Wilfong

universal home design in Austin

Simple adjustments like a sideways opening oven can make life a lot easier for a person in a wheelchair. | Jofre Essley / Flickr

For many years disabled people faced challenges at every corner of public life. Stairs, rough ground, or even just reaching objects on a shelf created obstacles at inopportune times. Then the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) came into play. Wheelchair ramps and handicapped restrooms became commonplace in common spaces, and the result has been an improved quality of life for millions.

Then there’s the subject of home design. Homes have been modified for many years to meet the needs of the disabled, but now there is a new concept of “universal design,” which means homes being built for all needs from the beginning, even if there is not currently a disabled person living there.
“Along with aging in place, universal design is becoming more of a household term,” says T-Square Company (14141 Highway 290 West, Suite 800 in Austin) in is online blog. “Essentially, it’s about building or modifying places and spaces—both public and private—to accommodate people of all ages and abilities. More than just an architectural concept, universal design is a win-win for sandwich generation boomers caring for aging parents and their children at home, for grandparents raising grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and for all who are facing the challenges of caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or other chronic diseases. Whether your family needs the support now or down the road, universal design features are a good long-term investment for the home itself.”

The trend toward 'universal design' in homes
Tuesday, Jan 15, 2019 @ 3:57pm
By David Wilfong

Discover the Principles Of Universal Design


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