After meeting a family affected by Larsen syndrome who expressed a desire for a new kitchen, we learned that a member of the family was wheelchair-bound but had a passion for cooking. As we gained a solid idea of what they were looking for in cabinetry, countertops, appliances, and all the other accessories that would enhance the space, we offered our suggestions and put our plans in motion. The kitchen project would not only be aesthetically pleasing and highly functional, it would also provide for safety and universally accessible throughout.
All the new features added up to making the family extremely happy. Where once it was inconvenient for anyone in a wheelchair to reach appliances, cooktop and counters because they were too high, now every newly installed item was easy to access and there was free range of motion in the kitchen.
The previous kitchen made it impossible to reach into drawers or countertops, find kitchen tools, or remove food from the refrigerator/freezer. Since the completion of the renovation, the family has donned their chefs’ hats many times, and is overjoyed to be cooking together.
Emily, a 19 year-old college student, is thrilled to be spending quality family time with her parents in the kitchen. While a good part of the kitchen design concentrated on meeting her needs, her mother, Ellen, points out that while the new kitchen facilitates Emily, it also helps her out tremendously, as well.
Emily is thrilled to be using their accessible kitchen. Although it’s been nearly a year since it was installed, she explains that it is still new and exciting each time the family works together in the kitchen.
Utilizing Universal Design standards, we designed a kitchen with quality products and special features that took into consideration the structure and environment that would make our clients feel comfortable, regardless of age, ability or situation.
We enhanced the space by creating a separate accessible section with no barriers between the sink, cooktop, and storage areas. Wheelchair accessible toekicks and a lower-placed wall oven, as well as an induction cooktop, were installed with safety features to prevent injuries. Cabinetry and countertops are steel reinforced and provide five feet of clear space for unobstructed wheelchair access.
Cabinetry and countertops were also installed at a lower height for convenient access. Additional easily-accessible electrical receptacles and switches were placed below the countertops.
DJ’s Home Improvements received a 2012 CotY Regional award as a “Universal Design Project Recognition” from the National Association of the Remodeling Industry for the above-mentioned kitchen renovation using Universal Design principles.
Emily discusses the challenges of and overcoming her spinal condition
* DJ’s Home Improvements is an award winning design and build remodeling company. Vita and Jerry have been staples of the Franklin Square community for 30 years. As homeowners and business owners for over 21 years in Franklin Square, we are also members of the Franklin Square Kiwanis, Chamber of Commerce, Sons of Italy, National Association of the Remodeling Industry, plus the National Kitchen and Bath Association and awarded Big50 in Remodeling. In 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011 we have received the Contractor of the Year awards.
If you are interested in having us design and build your home remodel project please call us at #516-775-8696.
DJ’s Home Repairs & Improvements, Inc.
Nassau Lic. #H18C4240000 – Suffolk Lic. # 46377-H