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Nova Scotia reveals new home designs for people with disabilities

A rendering of the dining area of a small option home by RHAD Architects

The Nova Scotia government has revealed new designs for community-based, small option homes for people with disabilities.

The Disability Support Program has procured two custom designs for modular homes that will meet the needs of residents and be developed more quickly than traditional construction.

“As more people move to living in a community, we want construction of new homes to be as efficient as possible,” said Karla MacFarlane, Minister of Community Services. “Having these home designs in place supports our government’s commitment to community living and phasing out large institutions.”

Both designs will enable up to four residents to live in accessible, energy-efficient homes that meet program and licensing requirements. Construction of the first five modular homes will begin this summer in the Annapolis Valley, South Shore, Halifax and Cape Breton areas. People are expected to move in early next year.

The modular home designs were developed by RHAD Architects and DORA Construction Limited. DORA’s team included Passive Design Solutions and Eastcut Wood Building Solutions. RHAD Architects’ team included an in-house team of architects who are certified as Passive House Designers and have Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification. Both teams received input from staff and residents of the Disability Support Program for small option homes.

Modular homes are built off site and then assembled on site, but a completed home functions the same as its traditional counterpart. They are built to the same standards as traditional homes, but factory construction allows more efficiency, lower costs and less exposure to the elements during the building process.

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