Redesigning the Wheelchair Symbol into the Accessible Icon

Danish design student Susanne Koefoed created the International Symbol of Access back in 1968 and as ubiqituos as it’s become, there’s a passivity to the design that’s arguably been bested by the newer “Accessible Icon.” With its own emoji and escalating adoption around the globe, the newer symbol began as a Boston-area street art project which tackled perceptions of “disability and the built environment.” Now, it’s a point of controversy. As Atlas Obscura notes, “It has variously been called ableist and empowering; officially rejected by the ISO; and deemed federally illegal, despite having been adopted by the states of New York and Connecticut.” To learn more about perception and prevalence, head over to Atlas Obscura.