Platinum for Accessibility

The Palms recently made improvements to the centre to become a first-class disability-friendly centre by offering mobility scooter parking, wheelchair ramps, braille signage and invested in staff training.

This programme saw the centre awarded a Platinum accessibility rating, the highest possible standard, after the social change organisation Be. Accessible conducted an accessibility assessment. The Palms is the first business in the South Island and the second shopping centre in New Zealand to receive a Platinum accessibility rating.

We have positioned ourselves as an example to other consumer-facing businesses. Accessibility is immediate and important: 25% of Kiwis have temporary or permanent disabilities that mean access to shopping centres can be difficult or limited.

At The Palms, we retrofitted our facilities to be accessible to people with sensory, physical and intellectual impairment, or with impaired mobility as a result of an accident, illness, age or pregnancy. Recognising that virtually every person will have an access need at some point in their life, we made significant improvements to achieve Platinum, the highest possible benchmark.