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Knox College has begun the first phase of a multi-year campus-wide accessibility study on its facilities.
Brad Nolden, vice president for administration and general counsel, says the recommendations of this study will provide critical information the College will use to help determine priorities for facility upgrades and ongoing maintenance.
Experts from Marx|Okubo, the architecture, engineering, and construction consulting firm conducting the study, visited campus multiple times throughout the summer to survey several campus buildings. Alie Green, Marx|Okubo accessibility specialist, says her team will create a report detailing specifics such as the height of tables and work surfaces, door clearance space, restroom accessibility features, pathways around campus, access to buildings, and much more. College leadership will receive the full report along with a tiered list of recommendations..
Stephanie Grimes, director of disability support services, feels that this study is an important step for Knox. “We want people to see that we are aware of accessibility issues and making choices to address issues across campus,” Grimes said. “We want people to be comfortable at Knox.”
Nancy Dillard, disability support services accessibility counselor, says these types of in-depth accessibility studies help highlight the small things that can easily be addressed. She points out that, for example, while the height and shape of a doorknob may make no difference to the average student, it may make a classroom inaccessible to those with disabilities.
Nolden expects a report in early 2024, at which point the College will incorporate the findings and recommendations into its plan for both short and long-term campus improvements.
“It’s a tremendously labor-intensive process,” Nolden said. “This study will help us make the campus more inclusive for students, visitors, and the general public.”
Published on October 09, 2023