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Accessible environments

Inclusive design addresses the needs of a diverse and constantly changing population by making environments accessible to all.


Inclusive design increases people’s freedom and improves equality by actively considering mobility, sensory and cognitive requirements. Our experts work across all sectors to ensure everything from buildings and unusual structures, transport and infrastructure, through to urban and rural areas do so without compromising other aspirations.

For example, signage and other wayfinding systems need to incorporate visual, tactile and audible elements, so that they cater for everyone – including people who are blind or partially sighted, deaf or hard of hearing, and people with learning disabilities.

More inclusive, less risk

Developers and building owners need to be confident that properties and other assets are not only commercially successful, but meet their obligations – legal, social and moral. By considering inclusive design early on, then throughout the development process, we can future proof, reducing the need for retrofit or redesign at later stages.

International accessibility experience

Working on projects around the world, we know international and regional regulations inside-out. For the 2007 Cricket World Cup in the West Indies, we assessed the accessibility of stadia for staff, officials and spectators. Indeed, we also inform and shape these regulations. Arup is currently working with a government body in the Middle East to develop accessibility requirements for all modes of transport.

Our experience extends to listed buildings such as the Rothesay Pavilion, where an audit helped the client to define their brief for refurbishment. And many of our projects – including Central St Giles and The Library Building in London – have been given awards for their excellence.

Wherever we work, and whatever we’re working on, our aim remains the same: to resolve complex design issues and create environments that are accessible to all.

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Portrait photo of Sarah Jones
  • Sarah Jones

    Sarah Jones

    Portrait photo of Sarah Jones

    Accessible Environments Consultant

    Your best solution to date?

    Working on Projects from Concept right through to completion e.g. Eton Manor.

    Why is it significant?

    Providing continuity through the project's life. Giving advice to the design team to create a venue suitable for sports wheelchair users to enjoy.

    Your particular skill?

    Inclusive design/Universal Design.

    Enthusiasm?

    Knowing that we are helping to create environments for everyone to use.

    Why Arup?

    It allows me to work on exciting projects, both nationally and internationally.

    Anything else?

    Registered with the National Register of Access Consultants (NRAC), ISEMOA auditor, Civic Trust Awards Assessor.

  • Global Accessible Environments Leader
Portrait photo of Mei-Yee Man Oram.
  • Mei-Yee Man Oram

    Mei-Yee Man Oram

    Portrait photo of Mei-Yee Man Oram.

    Accessible Environments Consultant

    Your best solution to date?

    I recently authored a new accessibility standard for a the transport department of a government body. This draws on international best practice and advises our client on how to implement inclusive design in their new projects and existing infrastructure.

    Why is it significant?

    This will go on to directly inform future built environments, creating equal opportunities for residents and visitors, encouraging the use of public transport over private cars, and thereby creating a more pedestrian-friendly and sustainable public realm.

    Your particular skill?

    Inclusive design in response to disability discrimination legislation, ensuring compliance with accessibility codes and standards.

    Enthusiasm?

    I find it inspiring to know that we are truly 'shaping a better world', creating environments that offer people an equal opportunity to participate in society and encouraging social cohesion within the communities that use these environments day to day.

    Why Arup?

    I love being able to work within a multidisciplinary environment where I am able to draw on the knowledge of international experts. Collaborating with people with that depth of insight means we can really provide our clients with holistic solutions.

    Anything else?

    Registered with the National Register of Access Consultants (NRAC); ISEMOA auditor; APMP Project Management qualification.

  • Global Accessible Environments Leader

Explore our work


A view of the seating area from inside a stadium. Credit: Arup Associates

Project: Cricket World Cup 2007

Accessibility reviews of the design for the 2007 Cricket World Cup stadiums.

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The Rothesay Pavilion facade.

Project: Rothesay Pavilion

The Rothesay Pavilion was refurbished after receiving funding from the Prince's Trust.

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Facade of the Clapham One building. Credit: Gareth Gardiner

Project: Clapham One (The Library Building)

An award winning building containing high quality residential units, a library and primary care centre.

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Low-angle shot of the NEQ Regents Place facade.

Project: NEQ Regents Place

We helped develop Regents Place, a 13-acre fully managed estate in London, from planning to completion.

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