Published October 15, 2008

BCA ups funding for accessibility upgrades

THE Building and Construction Authority (BCA) is raising funding support for buildings to be retrofitted with barrier-free accessibility features. Through BCA's $40 million Accessibility Fund, building owners can receive up to 40 per cent funding to upgrade their facilities with basic barrier-free features. The co-payment is subject to a cap of $150,000 per building.

To encourage more owners to make their buildings more accessible for all users, BCA will now co-pay up to 80 per cent for a basic package. The agency will also provide another funding support of 40 per cent for enhanced barrier-free features.

The maximum value of the grant will increase from $150,000 to $300,000 per building. All private buildings (except landed residential properties) can apply to use the fund with immediate effect.

Since 1990, all new buildings and existing ones which have undergone major addition and alteration works come with accessibility features which are friendly to persons with limited mobility. According to BCA, there remains a large stock of pre- 1990 buildings which do not have such features.

'We hope that with the enhancements to the Accessibility Fund, more owners of buildings built before 1990 will come forward to provide greater barrier-free accessibility to the buildings,' said BCA's CEO, John Keung. The fund has supported applications from 19 building owners since April 2007.