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Access Points to the Hospital Grounds

in this article, we discuss how public access points determines the accessibility, permeability and availability of a hospital campus.
Tallght University Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
Photo Design Features
  • Familiar and easily recognizable entrance gateway highlighting a clear point of entry to hospital.
  • Wide approach area for pedestrians towards main entry point onto hospital campus.

Design Considerations and Awareness
Similar to many campus-based public facilities (i.e. schools or universities) it is not only the location or the quality of the adjoining public space that determines the accessibility of the campus, but also the permeability of the boundary and the availability and convenience of the public access points. 

The quality of the local urban environment leading up to and entering the hospital influences the ease and comfort in which any person can access the hospital. As such, the extent to which the urban environment in which the hospital is located is an accessible, usable, safe and comfortable urban space for older people and people with dementia, and their family members and or carers should be given due consideration.

Walking as a mode of transportation is influenced by proximity of local destinations, connectivity to destinations and walkability. These elements take on an added significance when considering older people who may take 10 to 20 minutes to walk 500m-1km in flat topography, as opposed to 5 to 10 minutes for a younger person.

UD Dementia Friendly Design Guidance

  • Create a visually distinct entrance that clearly identifies the main public access point.
  • Walking distances for older people with dementia to key facilities or public transport nodes should ideally, not be greater than 500m.
  • Paths should be flat, even and sufficiently wide to allow the safe and comfortable passage of groups pedestrians. All surfaces should be non-slip, non-glare, and avoid strong patterns or sharp tonal or colour contrast.
  • Provide comfortable seating with back and arm rests every 100m to 125m to offer people rest points and opportunities to stop and orientate themselves.

For more information on the topics covered in this step, refer to Part B: Design Guidelines, Section 2: Site Location, Approach and Entry available to download below.

See Section C of the guidelines for Appendices with Key Terminology, Key Acronyms, and other information used in the guidelines

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Dementia Inclusive Hospitals from a Universal Design Approach

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