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Universal Design

lever door handle for universal design in senior apartments

Universal Design: One-story Design in a Luxury Apartment Setting

All Treplus Communities offer spacious single-story apartment homes that incorporate Universal Design features for ease of access and outstanding aesthetics throughout. Additional features include no-step entries into the units, and no steps throughout the units. Surfaces are designed to be slip-resistant, and all units have wide interior doors and hallways. Features such as lever door handles and accessible light switches and electrical outlets create ease of use in every room.

The master bath in each apartment has a no-step shower stall. Two-bedroom units have a tub/shower in the bathroom of the second bedroom. The bathrooms in Treplus apartments have towel bars that double as grab bars, and blocking is in place to provide additional support if needed. Grab bars are universal design features that enable residents to age in place more easily.

Universal Design, as a discipline, focuses on accessibility and livability features with pleasing aesthetics, and it is a key element within Treplus Communities. This type of design creates a better quality of life for a wide range of individuals, regardless of age, ability or situation in life.

The Main Principals of Universal Design

  • Equitable use
  • Flexibility in Use
  • Simple and Intuitive Use
  • Perceptible Information
  • Tolerance for Error
  • Low Physical Effort
  • Size and Space for Approach and Use

Housing that incorporates all basic elements of Universal Design accessibility comprises less than 1% of all housing stock in the United States. Retrofitting older homes to Universal Design standards can be difficult, costly and yield unattractive results (think ramps).

Five Basic Design Principals Incorporated by Universal Design

  • No-step entry
  • Single-floor living
  • Wide doorways and halls
  • Accessible electrical controls
  • Lever door and faucet handles

Treplus has gone to great lengths to make sure that all of its luxury apartments include all of the key elements of Universal Design. This promotes accessibility and makes aging in place easy within spaces that are also designed to be beautiful, spacious and contemporary.

Universal Design Features in Treplus Communities

  • No step entries into the home
  • Single-floor, ranch-style living; no steps within the home – including no-step walk in showers (tubs in the 2nd bath)
  • Surfaces that are stable, firm, and slip resistant (wood look flooring and tile)
  • Wide interior doors (at least 3'0"), hallways, and baths with 60" × 60" turning space at doors and dead-ends
  • Lever handles for opening doors rather than twisting knobs
  • Bright and appropriate lighting, particularly task lighting 
  • Light switches and electrical outlets at heights that are more accessible. 
  • Available grab bars in bathrooms

Universal Design