As the number of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) diagnoses continues to increase in recent years, the need for ASD accessible spaces is becoming more relevant. This growth in diagnoses means that it is now crucial that designers develop and transform their ways of creating a built environment to include the accommodation of mental disabilities as well as physical. Currently, under sections 4.1 and 4.2 of the 2020 Non-Domestic Building Standards Technical Handbook provided by The Scottish Government, accessible accommodations are only considered for those with reduced mobility due to a physical disability, with no consideration taken towards those who experience mental disabilities which impact the way a person interacts with the built environment.
My final major project will focus on reviewing a pre-existing grocery shop and cafe and redesigning it into a multi-use space which can be utilised comfortably by those on the autism spectrum alongside all other members of the public. By doing so, this will create a space in which autistic individuals can take partake in tending to essential wellbeing and social needs, such as completing a food shop and visiting with friends, while not feeling alienated by the world around them and experiencing a strong sense of community.