x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Sharjah plans special needs provision

All new buildings must be accessible to the disabled, according to a new Sharjah rule.

SHARJAH // All buildings must be accessible for people with disabilities, officials said yesterday.

The decision was made at a meeting of the Sharjah Housing Department, Sharjah Department of Public Works and the Sharjah City for Humanitarian Services yesterday and applies to private and government buildings, houses and offices.

All new architectural designs must comply before they are approved for construction, said Engineer Khalifa Misbah al Tunaiji, chairman of the Sharjah Department of Housing.

Considering the housing needs of community members who are disabled was done on the orders of Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, a member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, he said. "The Ruler's main objective is to ensure a decent life for all people with special needs," Mr al Tunaiji said.

He said that the Department of Housing was meeting with concerned departments to ensure that the new requirements would be implemented.

Older government buildings would eventually be brought up to code, he added.

"All future beneficiaries of public housing will also have these provisions suited in their houses to allow them live comfortably," he said.