Accessible Design in Public Housing: NYCHA Staff Training Program

Version 4.0 July, 2001

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Edward Steinfeld and Danise Levine, 2001
Additional information
Dwelling Units
Lavatory and Mirror
Section; 4.22.6;4.19
Examples from a NYCHA apartment

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nychatoilet.jpg (12164 bytes)
These illustrations show a typical lavatory and mirror in a NYCHA accessible unit. 

Figure 1

Is the sink 34 inches or less above the floor? (Measure from the floor to the top of the counter)


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Figure 2 (UFAS Figure 31)
Do knee and toe clearances comply with Figure 2?

Is there at least 29 inches clearance from the floor to the bottom of the apron? (see Fig. 1)

Flexibility of the adaptable vanity

The design utilizes folding doors and a removable base to provide access underneath for a wheelchair or seated person.
If a cabinet is provided under the lavatory in an adaptable bathroom, is it removable to provide this clearance (See Fig. 1)?
Note: This does not apply to NYCHA buildings.

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Figure 3

Is a clear space 30 x 48 inches provided in front of the lavatory to allow a forward approach? 
In NYCHA units, this space does not have to be centered on the lavatory. 
Clear floor space at fixtures may overlap. See illustrations in 4.34.2(12)

Does the clear floor space connect to an accessible route? (see Figure 3)


A lavatory may not overlap into the clear 
floor space by more than 19".

This is an example of a protective pipe 
cover that protects wheelchair users 
from scalding and sharp, abrasive 
surfaces. The plastic covering is installed over metal fittings.  

Figure 4

Does the lavatory overlap the required floor space less than 19 in.?

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Figure 5

Are hot water and drain pipes under the lavatory insulated or otherwise covered?

Are there no sharp or abrasive surfaces under the lavatory?(see Figure 5)

Section; 4.22.6; 4.19; 4.27

This faucets would be within 
compliance because the knob handles
require a tight grasping and twisting of 
the wrist to operate.

This faucets would not be within compliance because the knob handles require a tight grasping and twisting of the wrist to operate.
Figure 6

Are the faucets operable with one hand and do they not require tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist?

Section; 4.22.6; 4.19.6

A tilting mirror, as in the example above, offers children and seated people the opportunity to adjust the mirror to their 

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Figure 7

Are the mirrors mounted with the bottom edge of the reflecting surface no higher than 40 inches from the floor?

If a medicine cabinet is provided, is there a usable shelf inside no higher than 44 inches above the floor?(see Figure 7)

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Figure 8

Are clear spaces required for fixtures free of door swings?
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