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Department of Genetics Building

University of Cambridge, Downing Site, Downing Street, Cambridge, CB2 3EH

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Access Guide

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Introduction

  • Services / facilities within the building include Laboratories, Seminar Rooms, the Biffen Lecture Theatre, Refectory and Department of Genetics Library.

Getting Here

Useful Information

Building Parking

  • The building does not have its own dedicated parking.
  • Site/Campus Car Parks View
    • There is a site/campus car park for staff and visitors within approximately 200m.
    • The name of the car park is Downing Site Parking.
    • The car park is located throughout the Downing Site with a Blue Badge Building to the rear of the Courtyard Building.
  • Drop Off Point View
    • There is not a designated drop off point.

Site/Campus Car Park

  • Car Park View
    • The car park is located around the Downing Site with a Blue Badge bay located to the rear of the Courtyard Building.
    • The nearest building(s) to this car park is/are Department of Archaeology (Courtyard Building McDonald Institute) and the Sedgwick Building.
    • The car park type is open air/surface.
    • The car park does not have a height restriction barrier.
    • The car park surface is concrete.
    • Designated Blue Badge parking bays are available.
    • The Blue Badge bay(s) is/are clearly marked.
    • There is/are 1 designated Blue Badge parking bay(s) within this car park.
    • The dimensions of the designated parking bay(s) are 250cm x 615cm (8ft 2in x 20ft 2in).
  • Charges and Restrictions View
    • This car park can be used by Blue Badge holders, permit holders and staff permit holders.
    • There are no parking charges that apply on the day.
    • Signs are not provided to give information on parking charges/restrictions.
  • Drop Off Point View
    • There is not a designated drop off point in this car park.
  • Car Park Access View
    • There is sloped access to the car park from the Downing Site.
    • The nearest designated bay is 25m (27yd 1ft) from the Courtyard Building main entrance.
  • Comments View
    • There is car parking located throughout the Downing Site.
    • Car parking is restricted and over-subscribed.

Outside Access (Main Entrance)

  • Entrance View
    • This information is for the entrance located at the front of the building.
    • There is step free access at this entrance, via lift.
    • There is not a bell/buzzer.
    • There is an intercom.
    • The height of the intercom is 128cm (4ft 2in).
    • There is a canopy or recess which provides weather protection at this entrance.
    • The main door(s) open(s) towards you (pull).
    • The door(s) is / are double.
    • The door(s) is / are heavy.
    • The width of the door opening is 124cm (4ft 1in).
  • Second Set of Doors View
    • There is a second set of doors.
    • The door(s) open(s) towards you (pull).
    • The door(s) is / are double.
    • The door(s) is / are heavy.
    • The width of the door opening is 154cm (5ft 1in).
  • Step(s) View
    • There is a / are step(s) at this entrance.
    • The step(s) is / are located in front of the entrance.
    • There is / are 6 step(s) to access the entrance.
    • There is not tactile paving at the top and bottom of the step(s).
    • The step(s) is / are not clearly marked.
    • The step(s) is / are deep (18cm+).
    • The steps do have handrails.
    • The handrails are on both sides.
  • Lift View
    • There is a lift to access this entrance.
    • The lift does bypass the step(s).

Lift (Main Entrance)

  • There is a lift for public use.
  • The lift is located to the right of the entrance.
  • The lift is a platform lift.
  • Wall mounted information boards are not provided at lift landings.
  • The weight limit for the lift is 225kg.
  • The lift is approximately 4m (4yd 1ft) from the main entrance.
  • Staff do not need to be notified for use of the lift.
  • The clear door width is 110cm (3ft 7in).
  • The dimensions of the lift are 115cm x 140cm (3ft 9in x 4ft 7in).
  • There are separate entry and exit doors in the lift.
  • There is not a mirror to aid reversing out of the lift.
  • The lift does not have a visual floor indicator.
  • The lift does not have an audible announcer.
  • The lift does not have a hearing enhancement system.
  • The lift does not have Braille markings.
  • The lift does have tactile markings.
  • The controls for the lift are within 90cm - 120cm from the floor.
  • The lighting level in the lift is bright.

Reception

  • The main reception is located between the two entrance doors.
  • The desk is 2m (2yd 7in) from the main entrance.
  • The reception area is clearly visible from the entrance.
  • There is step free access to this reception area.
  • The lighting levels in the reception area are bright.
  • The reception desk/counter is low (76cm or lower).
  • There is a clear knee recess beneath the low/lowered counter.
  • The desk is staffed.
  • There is a hearing assistance system.
  • The type of system is a portable loop.
  • The hearing assistance system is signed.
  • Staff are trained to use the hearing system.
  • Opening Times View
    • Monday 08:30 - 16:30.
    • Tuesday 08:30 - 16:30.
    • Wednesday 08:30 - 16:30.
    • Thursday 08:30 - 16:30.
    • Friday 08:30 - 16:00.
    • Saturday Closed.
    • Sunday Closed.

Getting Around

  • Access View
    • There is step free access throughout the majority of the building, via lift.
    • There is a slight ramp, with no handrails, for access to the G8 Seminar Room and Tea Room, G6 Part II & Seminar Room.
    • The width of the ramp is 88cm (2ft 11in).
    • The ramp can be seen in photograph 1.
    • There is a steep ramp, with no handrails, for access to B3 - B17.
    • The ramp can be seen in photograph 2.
    • There is/are 3 clearly marked step(s), with a handrail on the left going up, for access to B10 and B11.
    • The step(s) is/are medium height (11cm - 17cm).
    • The steps can be seen in photograph 3.
    • There are not doors in corridors which have to be opened manually.
  • Getting Around View
    • There is not clear signage for building facilities/areas in the foyer/reception area.
    • There is clearly written directional signage at key points of circulation routes.
    • There is some flooring in corridors which is shiny and could cause issues with glare or look slippery to some people.
    • There is good colour contrast between the walls and floor in all areas.
    • The lighting levels are good.
    • This building does not play background music.
    • There is a hearing assistance system.
    • The system is a portable loop.
    • There is a portable loop available upon request in the G8 - Seminar Room / Tea Room.
  • Comments View
    • There is a single clearly marked medium step to access B14a. The step can be seen in photograph 4.
    • There are three medium steps with a handrail to the right to access rooms 208 - 211. These can be seen in photograph 5.

Eating and Drinking (G8 - Seminar Room / Tea Room)

  • Location and Access View
    • The following information is for the refectory.
  • Service and Menus View
    • Tables cannot be booked in advance.
    • There is a counter where food and drink can be ordered.
    • Menu types include; written wall menus.
    • Menus are clearly written.
    • Menus are presented in contrasting colours.
    • The type of food served here is cold snacks.
    • Plastic/takeaway cups are not available.
    • Adapted cups are available.
    • Adapted cutlery is not available.
    • Drinking straws are not available.
    • This area does not play background music.
    • There is not a hearing assistance system.
  • Service Counter(s) View
    • The height of the counter is 92cm.
    • There is not a clear knee recess beneath the low/lowered section of the counter.
    • There is not a moveable card machine available for payment.
    • The type of flooring in this area is wood.
  • Tables and Seating View
    • There is ample room for a wheelchair user to manoeuvre.
    • The majority of tables are accessible to wheelchair users.
    • The standard height for the underside of dining tables is 72cm.
    • No tables are permanently fixed.
    • No chairs are permanently fixed.
    • Some chairs have armrests on both sides.
    • The lighting levels are good.
    • A portable hearing loop is available on request.

Other Floors

  • Steps View
    • The floors which are accessible by stairs are B, G, 1, 2 and 3.
    • The stairs are located in front of you on entrance.
    • The stairs are approximately 5m from the main entrance.
    • There are 15+ steps between floors.
    • There are manual, heavy, single doors to access the stairwell on all floors.
    • The lighting levels are bright.
    • The steps are not clearly marked.
    • The steps are medium height (11cm - 17cm).
    • The steps do have handrails.
    • The steps have a handrail on the right going up.
    • There is a landing.
    • There is a similar set of stairs to the right of the building as can be seen in photograph 3.
      There is another staircase from the second to the third floor which can be seen in photograph 4.

Lift

  • There is a lift for public use.
  • The lift is located to your left on entrance.
  • The lift is a standard lift.
  • The floors which are accessible by this lift are LG, G, 1, 2 and 3.
  • Wall mounted information boards are not provided at lift landings.
  • The weight limit for the lift is 525kg.
  • The lift is approximately 3m (3yd 10in) from the main entrance.
  • Staff do not need to be notified for use of the lift.
  • The clear door width is 100cm (3ft 3in).
  • The dimensions of the lift are 115cm x 120cm (3ft 9in x 3ft 11in).
  • There are not separate entry and exit doors in the lift.
  • There is a mirror to aid reversing out of the lift.
  • The lift does have a visual floor indicator.
  • The lift does not have an audible announcer.
  • The lift does not have a hearing enhancement system.
  • The lift does not have Braille markings.
  • The lift does have tactile markings.
  • The controls for the lift are within 90cm - 120cm from the floor.
  • The lighting level in the lift is bright.

Reception (Department of Genetics Library)

  • The Department of Genetics library reception is located just inside the library on the first floor.
  • The desk is 50m (54yd 2ft) from the main lift.
  • Clear signage for the reception area is not visible from the entrance.
  • There is step free access to this reception area.
  • The lighting levels in the reception area are bright.
  • The reception desk/counter is low (76cm or lower).
  • There is not a clear knee recess beneath the low/lowered counter.
  • The desk is staffed.
  • There is not a hearing assistance system.
  • Comments View
    • The library reception desk is staffed on Thursdays between 08:30 and 12:30. For the rest of the week the library is open access and self service.

Library (Department of Genetics)

  • This library does not have a regular supply of books in Braille.
  • This library does not have a regular supply of books in large print.
  • This library does not have a regular supply of books in audio format.
  • There is not an ordering service.
  • Comments View
    • The Department of Genetics Library is located on the first floor.
    • Some of the books can only be accessed via use of a step ladder.
    • There are height adjustable chairs available.

Location of Toilet/Changing Facilities

  • Accessible toilet facilities are located immediately beyond the entrance next to the main lift.
  • Female and male standard toilet facilities are located to the left of the building on the basement and second floors of the the building and to the right of the building on the ground and first floors.

Accessible Toilet(s)

  • Location and Access View
    • This accessible toilet is located to your left on entrance.
    • This accessible toilet is approximately 2m (2yd 7in) from the main entrance.
    • There is step-free access to the accessible toilet.
    • This is a shared toilet.
    • A key is not required for the accessible toilet.
    • There is pictorial signage on or near the toilet door.
    • The contrast between the external door and wall is good.
    • The door opens outwards.
    • The door is heavy.
    • The door is locked by a twist lock.
    • The width of the accessible toilet opening is 88cm (2ft 11in).
    • The contrast between the internal door and wall is good.
    • The door has a horizontal grab rail.
    • The contrast between the horizontal grab rail and internal door is good.
  • Toilet Features View
    • The dimensions of the accessible toilet are 144cm x 194cm (4ft 9in x 6ft 4in).
    • The accessible toilet does not have an unobstructed minimum turning space of 150cm x 150cm.
    • The lighting levels are good.
    • There is a lateral transfer space.
    • As you face the toilet pan the transfer space is on the left.
    • The lateral transfer space is 75cm (2ft 6in).
    • The transfer space is obstructed by a female sanitary bin.
    • There is a flush on the transfer side.
    • There is not a spatula type lever flush.
    • There is a lever flush.
    • There is a dropdown rail on the transfer side.
    • The contrast between the dropdown rail(s) and wall is poor.
    • There is a/are wall-mounted grab rail(s) available.
    • As you face the toilet the wall-mounted grab rail(s) is/are on both sides.
    • There is a vertical wall-mounted grab rail on the transfer side.
    • There is a horizontal wall-mounted grab rail on the opposite side of the seat to the transfer space.
    • The contrast between the wall-mounted grab rail(s) to the left of the toilet and wall is poor.
    • The contrast between the wall-mounted grab rail(s) to the right of the toilet and wall is good.
    • The contrast between the walls and floor is good.
    • There is not an emergency alarm.
    • There is not a red flashing fire alarm beacon within the toilet.
    • Disposal facilities are available in the toilet.
    • There is a/are female sanitary and general waste (with no lid) disposal units.
    • There is not a/are not coat hook(s).
  • Additional Fixtures View
    • There is a mirror.
    • The mirror is not placed at a lower level or at an angle for ease of use.
    • There is not a colostomy bag shelf next to the toilet.
    • The toilet has a backrest and a cistern.
    • The height of the toilet seat above floor level is 48cm (1ft 7in).
    • The toilet seat colour contrast is poor.
    • There is a toilet roll holder.
    • The toilet roll holder can be reached from seated on the toilet.
    • The toilet roll holder is not placed higher than 100cm (3ft 3in).
    • The contrast between the toilet roll holder and the wall is poor.
    • There is a wash basin.
    • The wash basin and tap(s) can be reached from seated on the toilet.
    • The wash basin is not placed higher than 74cm (2ft 5in).
    • There are vertical wall-mounted grab rails on both sides of the wash basin.
    • The contrast between the wash basin wall-mounted grab rail(s) and wall is poor.
    • The wash basin tap type is lever mixer.
    • There is a wall fixed soap dispenser.
    • The soap dispenser can be reached from seated on the toilet.
    • The height of the soap dispenser is 98cm.
    • There is a towel dispenser.
    • The towel dispenser cannot be reached from seated on the toilet.
    • The towel dispenser is placed higher than 100cm (3ft 3in).
    • The height of the towel dispenser is 105cm (3ft 5in).
    • The contrast between the towel dispenser and the wall is poor.
    • There is not a hand dryer.

Standard Toilet(s)

  • Toilet Facilities View
    • The female and male toilets are located at the end of the corridor to your right on entrance.
    • There is step-free access to the toilet(s).
    • The standard toilet(s) is/are approximately 24m from the main entrance.
    • The colour contrast between the external toilet door(s) and wall(s) is good.
    • There is pictorial signage on or near the toilet door.
    • It was not possible to access the female toilet.
    • An ambulant toilet cubicle is available.
    • There are horizontal wall mounted rails available on both sides of the toilet.
    • The height of the wash basin(s) is 90cm.
    • The wash basin(s) tap type is lever mixer.
    • Lighting levels are good.

Standard Shower

  • Shower facilities are available.
  • The shower(s) surveyed is/are located to the right of the building on the first floor.
  • There is not level access to the services from the shower facilities.

Outside Access (Biffen Lecture Theatre)

  • Entrance View
    • This information is for the entrance located to the left of the main entrance.
    • There is ramped/sloped access at this entrance.
    • There is not a bell/buzzer.
    • There is not an intercom.
    • There is not a canopy or recess which provides weather protection at this entrance.
    • The main door(s) open(s) towards you (pull).
    • The door(s) is / are single.
    • The door(s) is / are heavy.
    • The width of the door opening is 84cm (2ft 9in).
    • There is a small lip on the threshold of the entrance, with a height of 2cm or below.
  • Ramp/Slope View
    • There is a ramp/slope at this entrance.
    • The ramp/slope is located in front of the entrance.
    • The ramp/slope gradient is slight.
    • The ramp is permanent.
    • There is a level landing at the top of the ramp.
    • The ramp does have handrails.
    • The handrails are on both sides.
    • The width of the ramp is 140cm (4ft 7in).

Lecture Theatre(s) (Biffen Lecture Theatre)

  • Directional and locational signage for the lecture theatre(s) is available in upper and lower case lettering that is clearly visible.
  • The corridor outside the lecture theatre(s) is sufficiently wide enough (150cm+) to allow wheelchair users to pass.
  • There is step free access into the lecture theatre(s).
  • The door opening width(s) is/are 75cm+ for the lecture theatre(s).
  • The door(s) for the lecture theatre(s) is/are not push pad activated.
  • There are designated spaces for wheelchair users within the lecture theatre(s).
  • The designated spaces for wheelchairs users are located at the front.
  • There is level access to the designated seating from an entrance.
  • There is not space for an assistance dog.
  • There is step free access to the speaker's area at the front of the lecture theatre(s).
  • The height of the speaker's desk/table is 74cm.
  • The speaker's desk/table is not height adjustable.
  • The lectern is height adjustable.
  • The lectern can be adjusted between the recommended heights of 80cm and 110cm (lowest part).
  • There is staggered seating within the lecture theatre(s).
  • The steps to the staggered seating do not have handrails.
  • There is not a hearing assistance system for the lecture theatre(s).
  • There is a visual fire alarm beacon in the lecture theatre(s).
  • There is sufficient space for a wheelchair user to manoeuvre within the lecture theatre(s).
  • There is fixed furniture within the lecture theatre(s).
  • The clear floor space beneath tables in the room(s) is 70cm.
  • A height adjustable table/bench is not available.
  • There are no chairs with armrests on both sides within the lecture theatre(s).
  • Floor coverings in the lecture theatre(s) are not even.
  • There are covered wires in the speaker's area which may form a trip hazard. These can be seen in photograph 4.