Pittsburgh Eyes Visitability Proposal
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
November 18, 2002
PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA--According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, three major cities in the United States currently have what are known as "visibility ordinances" -- rules that require homes to be accessible not only to people living in them, but also to those who might own them later or to visitors with disabilities. Six other cities, including Pittsburgh, are considering similar proposals.
The proposed Pittsburgh Visitability Ordinance would require all houses built or substantially renovated with public funds to have front entrances with no steps, for bathrooms to be located on ground floors, and for doors and hallways to be wide enough for wheelchairs.
Many people, including some home builders, agree that it makes good sense for homes to be accessible to all, especially with more seniors and people with disabilities living and interacting in the community. They tend to disagree, however, over whether such requirements should be written into law, primarily because of the potential costs involved.