Stepping back from a focused view on universal design, I see that there are other ways to achieve an environment that disappears the effects of many conditions that would otherwise be considered disabling. What is it and how is it possible?
A new and beautifully illustrated book, Restorative Commons: Creating Health and Well-Being Through Urban Landscapes, not only values that calming experience we all feel after time spent in nature, it looks at how to bring nature back into our urban settings. As Oliver Sacks says in the introduction, this non-pharmaceutical therapy works because it seems to satisfy a deep and necessary biological craving for nature.
This book consists of eighteen articles, informal dialogues, with an emphasis on the urban settings in and around New York City. Topics covered include human health and well-being, civic stewardship, design, lessons learned and ongoing questions. Best of all, for a limited time, the USDA Forest Service is making this free both as a hard copy and as a pdf. Don’t miss this engaging and inspiring book!
Use these links to get your copy:
Restorative Commons: Creating Health and Well-Being Through Urban Landscapes
USDA Forestry Service publication details
USDA Forestry Service book chapter details
Book in pdf form (save a tree)
A one-page pdf flyer