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Vancouver's door knob ban could prove a bear of a problem

By Berit Griffin May 16, 2014

Last month, the city of Vancouver implemented a ban on traditional door knobs in favor of levers for all new projects. A similar policy had already been in place for some of the city’s largest developments, but the new policy extends to private residences.

According to The Economist,

“The war on doorknobs is part of a broader campaign to make buildings more accessible to the elderly and disabled, many of whom find levered doorhandles easier to operate than fiddly knobs. Vancouver’s code adds private homes to rules already in place in most of Canada for large buildings, stipulating wider entry doors, lower thresholds and lever-operated taps in bathrooms and kitchens.”

To say the new policy has been gracefully accepted by the building community would be a stretch. But the bigger issue weighs about 900 pounds, is covered in fur and will eat just about anything: grizzly bears.

Levers may be easier for the elderly and disabled to operate, but they also are easier for bears. (In fact, according to The Economist, “Pitkin County, Colorado, in the United States, has banned door levers on buildings for this very reason.”)

Given Vancouver’s sordid past with curious bears, do you think the door knob ban should be reconsidered?