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A

Access

Access is the means of getting to, and through a place.

Access relates to the positioning of the buildings and their entrances and how people can move around inside them. This means that access is about the location of roads or footpaths entering a site and the routes they follow.

Good access allows everyone to move around comfortably and with relative ease. It does not segregate people because they use a wheelchair, or cannot see, or have a broken leg. It caters for the appropriate amount of traffic and vehicle types for the site and land use, balancing the needs of pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles.

Click here to access our lesson on The individual elements

Access

When considering whether the access to a place is appropriate, you need to ask:

1. How will people be able to get to and move around the place?

2. Are these arrangements appropriate and will they respect desire lines and the number of people using the place?

3. Will they be easy to maintain?

4. Are the streets pedestrian, wheelchair, buggy, cycle and vehicle-friendly for all users?

5. Does the design ensure an appropriate level of safety for all users?

6. Is car parking well integrated so it supports the street scene, or do roads and parking spaces dominate too much?

7. Is there access to good public transport facilities?

Click here to access our lesson on Assessing the design components

Access and inclusion

When assessing a design and access statement with regard to access and inclusion consider:
  • Will all potential users, no matter what their disability, age or sex, be able to enter the site, move around the area, enter the buildings and use the facilities?
  • Will the movement network support convenient, safe and appropriate travel?

Click here to access our lesson on Planning tools

Accessibility

Accessibility to transport refers to how easy it is for people to get to places, including walking to them. If you live in a highly accessible place you can reach other places and activities quickly and easily - whereas if you live in an inaccessible place, you can reach fewer places in the same amount of time.

Accessibility isn't just about proximity to a location, it's about practicality too. For example, parents are more likely to allow children to walk on well-lit, low-traffic streets than along the side of a busy road - and so any measures of accessibility need to take things like this into account.

Click here to access our lesson on The individual elements

Adaptability

Cities, towns, neighbourhoods, villages and streets are continually changing. People move in, people move out; shops open and close; new developments arrive and older developments have to adapt to changing market pressures. As a result, well designed places are those that can be flexible and adaptable to change - supporting rather than restricting the ebb and flow of our societies.

Getting the structure of places right is really important to how they can adapt. The roads and public spaces are often the hardest to change later on, mainly because of the way land is owned. So we need a network of streets and spaces that can work as times change. Like the Georgian square, which was never designed for the car, but can accommodate parking around its edge very well.

Click here to access our lesson on Recognising the qualities of good places

Amount

Is it possible to tell from the information given how appropriate the amount of the development is? ‘Habitable rooms per hectare’ or ‘dwellings per hectare’ can show very different things, and neither can usefully explain mixed-use or neighbourhood development.

Click here to access our lesson on Planning tools

Amount

The amount or extent of development relates to the quantity of buildings or spaces on a site.

Amount is useful if you need to judge a proposal against set figures like the number of new homes needed. It can also help when considering how many windows to order for a project, for example.

Absolute figures are needed so you can install the correct items in the right place and so you can work out budgets. The amount here might say 100 two-bedroom flats, with four windows each. This tells you how many windows there are in the building and how many rooms, flats and so on are in the block.

Click here to access our lesson on The individual elements

Amount

When considering whether the amount of development is appropriate, you need to ask:

1. How much will be built?

2. How intensively will it be used?

3. Is this right for the area?

4. Is the design efficient – that is, does it use all land properly or does it waste land/space?

Click here to access our lesson on Assessing the design components

Animated video fly through

Animated video fly throughs should provide:
  • sequence of computer-generated 3D model views
  • constantly moving to navigate the viewer along a selected flight path
  • can navigate at varying heights above or within the scheme
  • This gives the viewer a very interactive experience.

Click here to access our lesson on Artistic images

Appearance

When assessing a design and access statement with regard to Appearance consider:
  • Will the appearance support local character and distinctiveness?
  • Will changes to the place affect its long-term appearance?

Click here to access our lesson on Planning tools

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