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front cover lifetime home design guide

For Professionals

(2) Approach to dwelling from parking (distance, gradients and widths)

Principle: Enable convenient movement between the vehicle and dwelling for the widest range of people, including those with reduced mobility and/or those carrying children or shopping.

Criterion (2) Approach to dwelling from parking.

The distance from the car parking space of Criterion 1 to the dwelling entrance (or relevant block entrance or lift core), should be kept to a minimum and be level or gently sloping. The distance from visitors parking to relevant entrances should be as short as practicable and be level or gently sloping.

 

Required specification to achieve Criterion 2

*Note: Relevant entrances in respect of this Criterion are either the principal or secondary entrance doors to an individual dwelling or the main communal entrance door to a block of dwellings, and (in the case of basement parking) the entrance door to the lift core.

The principal approach route between parking spaces and relevant entrances should preferably be level (i.e. no gradient exceeding 1:60, and/or no crossfall exceeding 1:40).

Where the topography or Regulation (e.g. in relation to flooding) prevent a level principal route between parking and entrances, the principal route may be gently sloping with maximum gradients as set out in Criterion 3.

Where topography restricts the provision of a level or gently sloping approach from parking to only one entrance of a dwelling, this approach should typically be to the dwelling’s main entrance. This approach should only occur to a secondary entrance where it can be demonstrated that topography or Regulation prevents such a route to the main entrance.

If the principal approach to a communal entrance is gently sloping (i.e. with maximum gradients as set out in Criterion 3), a secondary stepped approach in accordance with Approved Document M domestic requirements, should also be provided.

The distance between all parking and entrances should be as short as practicable. Parking adjacent to entrances is the optimum arrangement. On large developments communal parking should be within 50 metres of the relevant communal entrance or (in the case of underground parking) the lift core. If a distance in excess of 50 metres cannot be avoided, level resting areas should be provided along the route.

Paths on all approach routes between parking and entrances should have a firm, reasonably smooth and non-slip surface. Those within the curtilage of an individual dwelling should have a minimum width of 900mm. Communal paths should have a minimum width of 1200mm.

 

Good practice recommendations that exceed, or are in addition to, the above requirements

  • Increase the width of the path between the parking and the dwelling within individual dwelling curtilages to 1200mm, particularly if there is a change in direction.
  • Increase the width of communal paths to 1800mm.
  • Where the approach route exceeds 50m, provide seating and weather protection at the required level resting places along the route.