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Barrier-free access - the key to self-sufficiency

“Barrier-free access is the key to ensuring that disabled individuals and persons of limited mobility enjoy self- sufficiency and participate in the normal life of society. The creation of a barrier-free environment has become a core mission in government, political and business circles alike.”
Dr. Volker Sieger, Institute for Barrier-Free Design and Mobility, Mainz (Germany)

What exactly does the term “barrier-free” mean?

Buildings and other infrastructure, means of transport, items of technical equipment, IT systems, sources of audiovisual information, communications devices and other factors of day-to-day life are regarded as “barrier- free” if disabled persons can use them in a normal way without special difficulty and, generally, without any outside help.
Barrier-free construction and living is increasingly significant to, and being accepted more and more by, society as a whole. Indeed, barrier-free construction has become an integral part of forward-looking planning and design.

Gilgen Door Systems belongs to the FTA (the German professional association of door-automation suppliers). The FTA encourages this approach to barrier-free thinking, and was a key contributor to the new DIN standard 18040 (“Barrier-free Construction”), which appeared in late 2010/early 2011.
Nice to know: Barrier-free construction is not just designed to benefit disabled persons and the elderly, but also those experiencing temporary difficulties, such as parents trying to deal with small children and prams, persons handling large items of shopping, or people having to walk with crutches, etc.