Designing A Narrow Wheelchair Ramp

Designing A Narrow Wheelchair Ramp

Published on Tuesday 30th November 2021

A narrow wheelchair ramp is frequently the suitable choice for projects facing spatial constraints. We typically only install compact ramps when alternative exits are not feasible. Nevertheless, if strict compliance with Part M and K regulations is mandatory, a sufficient amount of space becomes essential to meet the minimum gradient and width requirements for a fully compliant system.

A narrow wheelchair ramp is frequently the suitable choice for projects facing spatial constraints. We typically only install compact ramps when alternative exits are not feasible. Nevertheless, if strict compliance with Part M and K regulations is mandatory, a sufficient amount of space becomes essential to meet the minimum gradient and width requirements for a fully compliant system.

 

Minimum Compliant Gradients & Widths:

  • Ramps for public use (whether to a building or space) require a minimum width of 1500mm, and often can accomplish a minimum ramp gradient of 1:15 or a 1:20 gradient is frequently specified.
  • The maximum gradient that your ramp can reach is determined by the change in rise (aka the height) to overcome.

    If the maximum gradient has been reached, a resting platform must be provided to allow the user to pause, as they may become tired and out of breath.

    Diagram – The relationship of ramp gradient to the going of a flight.

 Ramp For Dogs, Plunketts Veterinary Surgery 

  • Compliant ramps for dwellings must meet a minimum width of 900mm and often a can accomplish a gradient of 1:12.

Front door ramp 

If you are having trouble achieving a fully compliant system, ask yourself if there is an alternative entrance that a ramp can be installed from?

 

There are some exceptions...

A Fire Exit With Restricted Space

If it is concluded that a ramp with a narrow width is the only design achievable, then ultimately, it is at the building controller’s discretion if they accept this.

In the event of a fire, a wheelchair user must have fast access out of the building. So arguably, it is better to have wheelchair access than none in such a circumstance. However, the specifier MUST attempt to achieve a system that is as close as possible to compliancy, with both Part M and K of the Building Regulations.

Compliant features that should be included on a narrow wheelchair ramp:

  • 900mm High Infill handrails - This product prevents users from climbing or falling through gaps. It is often specified for schools and public buildings.

  • Yellow Tread Strips - A safety feature designed to help those with impaired vision identify the nose of the ramp or step. Additionally, it helps users distinguish any level changes.

  • Rest Platform (if appropriate) - A rest platform at every 5 metres of the ramp is required to allow the user to pause (please note that this isn't shown on the full drawing).
  • Compliant gradient – the ramp must be designed with a gradient that is close as possible to compliancy, with both Part M and K of the Building Regulations.

Our Rapid Ramp System is modular and comes in various widths to achieve a narrower system without fuss.

 

Historic buildings With Restricted Space

When specifying wheelchair access to historic buildings or spaces, there is a delicate balance at play.

Protected buildings need to be preserved; however, responsible adjustments must be made so that facilities can be compliant with DDA guidelines.

Therefore, a specifier working with a restricted historic space should attempt to achieve a system that is as close as possible to compliancy, with both Part M and K of the Building Regulations. This includes all compliant features, as discussed previously.

Furthermore, wheelchair access should be achieved with minimum or no damage to the building.

Our Rapid Ramp System is never bolted to walls to minimise any impact on buildings, and rubber or concrete pads can be added underneath the support feet. Throughout the process, we’re also happy to consult with the appropriate conservation and planning authorities.

 

Ramp Requirement

Are you needing a ramp? Request a quick quote or email [email protected] with the full project address, drawings, photos and contact details. 

Compliant and standard modular ramps are available.

fully compliant modular rampstandard modular ramp

Step Units

Alongside our modular metal ramps, we also provide our widely used and specified modular steps. Again, compliant, and standard versions are available

>>Learn more about our modular steps<<

>>Click Here For Further Information About Step Heights & Widths<<

 

CONTACT US FOR A FREE QUOTATION: 

EMAIL: [email protected]

Or fill in the quick quote form. 

 


CASE STUDIES

Chelmsford Waste Pipe Project

OVERCOMING AN ACCESS CHALLENGE

Application : Public Space
Location : Chelmsford
System : Standard Ramp System

Rapid Rental

Heigham Water Treatment Works

Application : Modular Building
Location : Norwich, Norfolk
System : Standard Ramp System

Supply & Install

Auction Site, Rotherham

ADJUSTABLE RAMP LEGS RAISD THE WALKWAY

Application : Public Building
Location : Rotherham, South Yorkshire
System : Fully Compliant Ramp System / Fully Compliant Step

Supply & Install

King's College Hospital

900MM WIDE FIRE EXIT RAMPS FOR THE NEUROSCIENCE OFFICES

Application : Healthcare
Location : Denmark Hill, London
System : Standard Ramp System

Supply & Install

Lincoln Cathedral

INTERNAL WHEELCHAIR ACCESS FROM THE MINSTER YARD

Application : Heritage
Location : Lincoln, East Midlands
System : Standard Ramp System

Supply & Install

St Paul’s Cathedral - South Transept

DDA IMPROVEMENTS WORKS – SOUTH TRANSEPT RAMP

Application : Heritage
Location : London
System : Fully Compliant Ramp System

Supply & Install

THE UK’S EXPERTS IN MODULAR RAMP SYSTEMS.

Rapid Ramp

10 Menzies Road, Ponswood Industrial Estate, St Leonards on Sea, TN38 9BB

Hours:
8am - 5pm, Monday to Friday

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