Engineers from across Urban Vision recently teamed up with the Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB) to gain a better understanding of the difficulties faced by blind and partially sighted people so that future design projects can take these into account.
Volunteers from the RNIB came to the Salford Civic Centre, where Urban Vision are based, to meet with staff and take them on a walk around Salford with specially created glasses which replicate the different types of sight loss that people may experience through their lives.
Examples of the type of sight loss replicated by the glasses included that of stroke victims, those with tunnel vision, partial sightedness and complete sight loss.
As part of a scheme designed by Urban Vision, known as the New Bailey Gateway in Salford, our engineers consulted with representatives from the RNIB to design a public realm which minimised barriers for blind and partially sighted people. The new design will now feature a minimalist approach to street furniture and the absence of clutter on the main walkways.
Ryan Adamson, Engineering Technician at Urban Vision who organised the walks, said: ‘It was a unique experience to complete the walk and understand what it’s like to not have something many of us often take for granted. As a team we are now able to take into consideration the type of challenges faced by visually impaired people and incorporate that into our designs going forward.’