Q: In past years, I seem to remember a movement to have architects and builders promote universal design, with at least one bathroom with doors wide enough for wheelchairs. Did this idea totally die because of cost? A: We're happy to say the universal design movement is alive and well. In fact, there is a Center for Universal Design at North Carolina State University. You can check out the website here. If a home is initially designed and built for people with varying degrees of physical abilities, the increased cost is negligible. Retrofitting is another story and can run the gamut from installing $10 grab bars to a $40,000 elevator. As the baby boomers get long in the tooth, more emphasis is being put on aging in place. Our former editor at The San Francisco Chronicle, Lynette...
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