Accessibility in all aspects is incredibly important, especially in commercial and public facilities. Making sure that those who utilize wheelchairs and other tools revolving around a disability are able to properly function around public spaces is crucial. Not only is it important to promote inclusion, but it is required by the American with Disabilities Act (ADA).
The Americans with Disabilities Act was originally made to combat discrimination against disabled persons by employers, governments and unions. A disabled person fits the description of possessing a physical or mental impairment that limits major activities in life in one or more ways, possesses a record detailing their impairment and is regarded as currently having the recorded impairment. These standards make it possible for those with disabilities to embrace public spaces in the community as much as fully abled individuals.
According to the International Building Code (IBC), storage rooms and file rooms are required to meet the same compliance for the Americans with Disabilities Act. This means that they must have the same accessibility as the rest of their facility, not just for guests, but also for employees.
What the ADA requires for storage spaces in commercial facilities is access-width aisles between storage units for wheelchair accessibility. The minimum standards can change but are fairly clear for wheelchair accessibility. This means that there should either be available space for turning, which is 180 degrees, or provide a t-shaped space to allow for backing up and turning of the wheelchair. This can be determined on an individual basis depending on the physical limitations of the space.
When it comes to shelving, the needs are that there is enough space between units that a wheelchair can comfortably fit. Of course keeping in mind the space previously mentioned for turning around. This means that to provide the appropriate accessibility features required by the ADA, shelving must be very spread out. This can limit the amount of shelving you can place in your space, limiting your overall storage capacity.
One way to provide a completely accessible storage space while still maintaining a high capacity for storage is by utilizing Spacesaver mobile shelving. Mobile shelving is incredibly useful in all aspects, not just when considering accessibility. The system provides almost double the amount of shelves in the same amount of space than standard shelving requires. The moving parts allow for easy access to products being stored.
When regarding accessibility, instead of having to allow access-width aisles between each storage unit like with standard shelving, the Spacesaver mobile shelving can create an aisle wherever an operator needs access to. The shelves are incredibly easy to move and can be controlled by four different methods:
- Manual assist
- Mechanical assist
- Powered touchpad control
- LCD touchscreen control
High density shelving is incredibly beneficial for a storage space because it maximizes your square foot capacity. You can store much more in a smaller space while still allowing for reconfiguring. These shelves can be customized and are versatile and flexible. This will increase accessibility within your storage space while still providing a maximum amount of storage.
By implementing efficient storage solutions like Spacesaver mobile shelving, you can truly provide a productive and organized space where inclusivity and accessibility is never an issue.