The objective of the paper: firstly, to evaluate accessibility and usability in the facilities that used by people with disabilities (PwDs) in shopping malls. Secondly, to identify whether the facilities provided in according with the latest Malaysian standards (MS 1184:2014) Universal Design and Accessibility in the Built Environment-Code of Practice. The paper will discuss disability and accessibility issues, current accessibility system in Malaysia, Malaysian Standards and universal design implementation in built environment and the importance of shopping malls in accessibility for Malaysia. It is a part of on-going research on universal design implementation in shopping malls. Accessibility in the shopping mall for people with disabilities PwDS is vital in order to provide and promote security and independence. Thus, in the planning of shopping malls well as in the design process, special considerations should be applied to accommodate the needs of the PwDs. Both qualitative and quantitative methods will be applied, by using descriptive analysis, observation, questionnaire, access audit simulation, checklist and interview. Photographic documentation is also taken for further analysis of the current facilities condition. Three case studies have been selected to evaluate accessibility of the shopping malls for People with Disabilities PwDs which are IKEA in Damansara, Suria Kuala Lumpur convention Centre (KLCC) in Kuala Lumpur and Alamanda in Putrajaya. The expected findings to identify whether the facilities provided match the needs of the people with disabilities, this is further supported by using the Malaysian standard (MS 1184:2014) Universal Design and Accessibility in the Built Environment-Code of Practice that fits and matches the facilities provided for various types of People with Disabilities PwDs.
This study is one of very few studies which have evaluated accessibility and usability in the facilities that used by people with disabilities PwDs in shopping malls. The paper’s primary contribution is to provide recommendations to the field of built environment, some extension could be done with this research by detailing the design characteristics and focuses more in every inaccessible public facilities that has the potential to be planned or redeveloped for new shopping mall or existing one to enhance the life quality for PwDs and provide user friendly accessibility within and outside shopping malls.
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