Every space you inhabit should be safe and welcoming.
If you’re a designer, or if you live with a person who has special needs due to age, you’re probably familiar with universal design. It’s all about making a living space accessible to everyone. Universal lighting design specifically uses light to make these improvements and accommodations possible.
Most often, you hear about universal lighting design for task areas in kitchens and bathrooms, but it’s also a very important concept for the exteriors of homes and buildings.
When night falls, universally designed exterior lighting ensures a smooth transition between inside and out. It keeps porches, patios, steps, and walkways always inviting.
Use these rules to create an outdoor environment that is safer for everyone.
1. Create a visual destination.
Aging eyes need more light to distinguish detail. So, when an elderly person navigates in the dark, he needs the light to clearly indicate where he should go. All the lights should converge on, or point to a single destination, usually the front door or entrance. This spot is the brightest spot on the property.
2. Clearly define outdoor “zones.”