Accessible Design in Public Housing: NYCHA Staff Training Program

Version 4.0 July 9, 2001

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Edward Steinfeld and Danise Levine, 2001
Additional information Common/Public Spaces
Drinking Fountains
Section 4.1.2(9)
If drinking fountains are provided, then at least 50% but not less than one must meet the UFAS requirements.
Section 4.15.5(2)
Examples of innovative design
in drinking fountains

The following drinking fountain 
prototypes are designed to
accommodate both standing and
seated users. They are good 
examples of universal design.

Pivoting drinking fountain in a raised 
position for standing users.

Pivoting drinking fountain in a lowered 
position for seated users.

The wave drinking fountain is in a fixed 
position, but can accommodate standing
users.......... well as seated users.

Note the generous clearance under
these fountains.
Drinking Fountain
Figure 1

If the unit is free-standing or built in and does not have a clear space underneath it, does it have a clear floor space alongside it at least 30 by 48 inches which allows a wheelchair user to make a parallel approach?

Section 4.15.5(1)
Drinking fountain
Figure 2

If the unit is wall or post mounted is there a clear knee space between the bottom of the apron and the ground which is at least 27 inches high, 30 inches wide and 17 inches deep?

Section 4.4.1

Maximum projection into a circulation 

If a wall mounted drinking fountain has a bottom edge between 27 and 80 inches from the floor, does it project less than 4 inches into the pathway? (see Figure 1) 
Note: Wall mounted fountains with bottom edges at or below 27 inches may project any amount so long as the required clear width of an accessible route of travel is not reduced.

Section 4.15.2
If there is more than one fountain/
cooler on a floor, only 50% have to
meet these requirements. Thus, if 
there was a complying fountain, a 
unit like that at the right would be
Drinking fountain
Figure 3

Is the spout outlet no higher than 36 inches from the ground?

Section 4.15.3
This rule insures that people with
disabilities who cannot drink from 
the spout directly still can use the
fountain. The flow of water does not
have to be exactly parallel.

Figure 4

Is the spout at the front of the unit, with a water flow parallel
or nearly parallel to the front edge and a water stream at least 4 inches high to allow the insertion of a cup under the stream?

Section 4.15.4

Examples of different controls
for drinking fountains

Drinking fountain controls
This type of knob control would not be 
within compliance because it is spring loaded
and requires a pinching and twisting of the
wrist to operate.

This type of push plate control is easy to operate.

This is a good example of a control 
operable with one hand.

Drinking fountain
Figure 5

Are the controls located near the front edge and are they operable with one hand and without tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist?

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