The Universal Access of Greenways

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The Universal Access of Greenways was written for the Campbell River Sustainability Studio, Faculty of Landscape Architecture, The University of British Columbia, February, 1998.


Universal design is a design approach which combines barrier-free design with design for "all degrees of sensory awareness, all types of movement, and all levels of physical and intellectual function."  Universal design seeks to design for the broadest possible spectrum of people through an all-encompassing design.  The implementation of universal design to greenway design is a relatively new concept.  Greenways like the Oyster River Greenway combine recreational experiences with an ecological mandate therefore preservation of the natural environment is a dominant design criteria.  There are many who would like to enjoy natural settings, without alterations that would fundamentally change the natural environment.  The conflicts between universal design, accessibility, and ecology may be resolved by a hierarchical trail system that provides alternate trail standards in different areas of the greenway. 

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