Return to the Brisbane Access and Inclusion page.
Table of contents
- Lord Mayor's introduction
- Executive summary
- Our shared vision for Brisbane
- A profile of people who benefit from better access and inclusion in Brisbane
- Council's history of access and inclusion initiatives
- Reflection on Council's changing approach to access and inclusion
- How this plan was developed
- Implementation, monitoring and reporting
- An innovative local government role
Brisbane is one of the world's most liveable subtropical cities. When we ask residents what they like about Brisbane, 80% agree that our friendliness, green open spaces and outdoor lifestyle are the most valued aspects of Brisbane life.
Council wants all Brisbane residents to experience:
- Public buildings that make you feel welcome.
- People-friendly public spaces.
- Local meeting places where you connect with your community.
- Parks and natural areas where you enjoy the great outdoors.
What you have told us
When we asked for feedback on the draft plan, we learned about six key community concerns in relation to Council's role in providing accessible and inclusive public buildings, public spaces, community facilities and outdoor spaces. A response to each concern has been identified in the relevant section of this plan.
Everyone needs access to public toilets they can use
Brisbane residents and visitors have difficulties with finding and using accessible public toilets. Many people reported making their way to accessible toilets only to find them locked, and people with limited hand dexterity and grip reported difficulties with locking systems. To participate in the life of the city, everyone needs access to public toilets they can use with ease and dignity.
Wayfinding tools for navigating to and within Council buildings
People with low vision or those who are Deaf or have hearing loss need access to information about how they can navigate Council buildings, venues and public spaces to get to the services they need. Brisbane lacks public audio-visual consoles that provide this information. Tactile ground surface indicators, Braille trails and raised or Braille signage still have their place, but they are rapidly being superseded by digital mobile devices offering new possibilities for creating wayfinding tools.
Heated swimming pools for therapy
Access to heated swimming pools can have a big impact on people's physical health, activity and wellbeing, in particular for people with musculoskeletal conditions. There are too few in Brisbane to meet growing demand.
‘Must-haves' for all abilities playgrounds
People are very positive about the Lord Mayor's leadership on accessible playgrounds and are keen to see accessible play equipment alongside other vital access infrastructure in Council parks. The things identified as most important are:
- disability parking with safe set down points
- continuous path of travel with pathways wide enough for a chair and a carer side by side
- accessible toilets with adult-sized change table
- a variety of all abilities equipment designed to support interaction between children and their parents or carers and between parents or carers
- shaded and accessible seating and picnic settings
- natural enclosures or fencing to help keep children safe, in particular those whose conditions make them likely to suddenly run away
Where one or more of these elements is missing, it has a big influence on who can use those places for different types of recreation.
Drinking bowls for companion animals
Guide dogs and companion animals are becoming more common and in a subtropical climate their owners need easy ways to get them a drink of water.
Calm places for people experiencing sensory overload
People who experience sensory overload, particularly in a subtropical urban environment like Brisbane, need quiet, calm, cool spaces where they can retreat when overwhelmed and different types of facilities and urban design to support their navigation of public space and participation in public events. Brisbane has some world-leading researchers in this emerging field of neurodiversity at the Queensland University of Technology.