Here’s some recent news that affects commercial real estate here in Phoenix:

commercial real estate
Provided by The Accessible Icon Project

Last month, the city granted permission to replace the International Symbol of Access, also known as the disability sign, with a new icon. This is not a mandate or a new law, but you may start seeing the new symbol pop up in commercial real estate locations around town.

Of course, the symbol we all recognize is the white stick figure in a wheel chair on a blue background. This symbol has been around since 1969. The new image will still have the same color scheme, but it emphasizes ability rather than disability, according to city officials in an article on AZ Central online.

The new icon was designed by Sara Hendren, a professor of design at Olin College of Engineering in Massachusetts. She is also the founder of The Accessible Icon Project, a group focused on providing people with supplies and services they need to make the switch to the new sign.

Hendron said her inspiration for her new design were the signs that you see in National Parks.   “If you go to a National Park, and you look at the signs that tell you what you can do in that park—swimming, boating, fishing,” she said. “All of those bodies are doing really interesting things, and you can convey that information with the lines of the body really easily. It’s about bringing the international symbol into line with those kind of two-dimensional icons.”

The support around Phoenix from advocates of the new image is very strong. Angelica Greene, a clinical program manager at Cigna, has led her organization’s efforts in Phoenix to approve the change. In the AZ Central article, Greene is quoted as saying, “…when you look at the new icon, you’re looking at someone that’s active and engaged…those are things that were not present when you look at the old icon.”

Although Phoenix officials support the use of the new symbol, there are no immediate plans to change out all of the city’s signage. However, the new icons may go up throughout Phoenix when new signs or sign replacements are needed.

Of course, any privately owned commercial real estate location has the choice to put up the new icons in parking lots, on buildings, and in windows.

If you are interested in learning more about The Accessible Icon Project, you can visit the organization’s website at If you would like to learn more about commercial real estate in Phoenix and around the Valley, please contact us here at the Menlo Group. We are always happy to help you with your commercial real estate needs.