Clearing Our Path

Creating accessible environments ­for people with vision loss

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Design Needs

Design Basics

Exteriors and Interiors

Exterior Design Elements

Interior Design Elements

Elevator Lobbies

The lobby to the elevator bank on the main floor of a building should be directly accessible from the building’s main entrance. On upper floors, the elevator lobby should be directly accessible from the main circulation route.

Be consistent throughout a building in the design and placement of signage, call buttons, auditory cues and other elements that facilitate wayfinding in elevator lobbies.

Elevator doors in lobbies should contrast in colour and brightness to their surroundings and have a non-glare finish.

Elevator service panels operated with a key by building personnel should be located away from a public elevator’s call-button panels to avoid confusion for people with vision loss.

In lobbies with only one elevator, the elevator’s call-button panel should be placed to the right of the elevator door. In lobbies with two or more elevators, the call-button panel should be located between the elevators to provide ample access for all users.

Heat-sensitive call-button panels are not recommended for elevators because it’s too easy to unintentionally activate the wrong directional button. Call-button panels should have visual/tactile symbols indicating the “up” and “down” directions. The braille symbol for “up” should be placed above the “up” button and the “down” symbol below the “down” button.

Place signs with raised print and uncontracted braille characters on both sides of elevator door jambs to indicate floor designations. The centre of these signs should be 1,500 mm from the finished floor. Raised print signage should contrast in colour and brightness to the surface of the wall. It should use arabic numerals that are at least 50 mm tall, raised at least one millimetre from the surface. The braille floor designation should be located below the raised print characters.

On ground level, place a tactile star to the left of the raised print floor designation. This symbol is used universally in buildings to indicate to visitors that they are on ground level, since ground level floors are often labelled inconsistently.

Where buildings incorporate banks of elevators that serve different floors, in addition to visual signage, tactile signs should provide information on which floors are served by which bank of elevators.