K-State Olathe and its design/build partners honored by City of Olathe

May 27, 2011

OLATHE, Kan. – Kansas State University Olathe's Chief Executive Officer Dan Richardson and K-State Olathe's design/build partners have been honored for the accessible design of the university's new building, the International Animal Health and Food Safety Institute.

K-State Olathe, DesignSense, Inc., 360 Architects, and Weitz Construction were given the Community Accessibility Award for public, private, or civic entities by the City of Olathe's Persons with Disabilities Advisory Board. The award was one of several presented at the eighth Annual Community Awards Program on May 26 in the Council Chamber of Olathe City Hall.

"We worked with the Olathe Persons with Disabilities Advisory Board to go beyond ADA compliance," Richardson said. "Because of that process, this is a more accessible and welcoming building for all. We're honored to receive this award recognizing those efforts."

Some features of the K-State Olathe building include podiums that are universally designed to allow wheelchair access, wider doorways, contrasting colors between floors, walls and furniture to aid those that are visually challenged, and family restrooms.

K-State celebrated the grand opening of its new building April 26, 2011.

The theme of the awards event was "Diversity Makes the Difference." Other individuals living and working in the City of Olathe or living and working elsewhere who have contributed to the promotion of human rights to the benefit of the citizens of Olathe received awards in the following categories:

Olathe Human Relations Commission Humanitarian Award – Sgt Brian WesslingOrganization Award – Pathway to HopeEducator Award – Dr. Connie Heinen, Principal and Olathe North School StaffYouth Award (19 or under) – Clayton CrowOlathe Human Relations Commission Chairman's Award – Lane GreenPolice Services Award – Captain Greg O'Halloran

- By Mary Lou Peter – mlpeter@ksu.edu or 913-307-7314