Accessibility on campus

This page offers information about accessibility on campus at UBC Okanagan and the programs which UBCO has established to improve accessibility.

Physical accessibility of our campus 

UBC is committed, over time, to providing universal accessibility at its facilities and requires that all Okanagan buildings meet British Columbia Building Code accessibility provisions. However, the unique character of the UBCO campus consists of significant gradient changes which may create barriers for some people with mobility impairments. 


During the upcoming Summer Terms 2024 there are scheduled elevator closures in four buildings. The closures will be for three weeks for each elevator. These closures are required for maintenance and updates to the elevators. During the entire three week time period that the elevator is under repair it will be inoperable. Access to the upper floors will be by stairs only.

The scheduled elevator closures are as follows:

  • Library (LIB), south entrance: June 17 – July 10
  • Science (SCI): July 8 – 26
  • Arts (ART): July 15 – August 7
  • Administration (ADM): July 29 – August 22

More information available on the Facilities website. If you require additional assistance, please contact 250-807-9236 or

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Priority access for on-campus housing 

In some circumstances, students with a disability or medical condition may be eligible to live on campus beyond their first year, or in a particular room type.  

The following restrictions apply:  

  • To receive a recommendation for priority access for housing, you must have disability-related needs that cannot be met in off-campus housing.  
  • The presence of a disability alone is insufficient to qualify for priority access for housing.  
  • You must provide medical documentation with detailed information about the functional impact of your disability/chronic medical condition in relation to housing. 
  • All students living on campus must meet the academic course load requirements. If you cannot maintain this course load for disability-related reasons, contact your Accessibility Advisor to discuss a reduced course load.   
  • Recommendations by the DRC for priority access for housing are subject to the availability of campus housing. 

To apply for priority access for housing on campus, you must complete the following two steps:  

  1. Apply to live on campus through the Student Residence – Okanagan housing office by the deadline. In your Housing Application, check the box under “Priority Access” that indicates you are applying for priority housing due to disability-related reasons. 
  2. Complete the ‘Priority Housing Request Form’ through the DRC Student Portal and provide medical documentation. If you are not already registered with the DRC, you will need to first complete the Student Intake Form. 

Deadline to request priority access for housing on campus: 

  • February 1: For returning students  
  • May 1: For incoming (first-year) students 

Still, have questions about the Priority access for on-campus housing? 



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Guide dogs and service dogs on campus 

A guide or service dog is trained to avoid hazards or perform quantifiable tasks that directly ease the challenges associated with their owner’s disability. Guide and service dogs and their handlers are certified. 

Service dogs can be certified in-province, out of province, or out of country. Service dogs must meet the criteria that would be evaluated by BC Certification.

Learn more about British Columbia’s Service Dog Certification Testing through the link below.

Learn more

If you have a service dog and require campus housing, please inform the DRC before the housing deadline to ensure we can make the appropriate room recommendation to the Housing Office.

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Emotional support animal request for campus housing 

UBC Okanagan campus housing has a no-pet policy. If you wish to request to have an Emotional Support Animal (ESA) living with you on campus, complete the Emotional Support Animal Application and Release of Information form 

All components must be complete for the application to be considered. The DRC will contact your treating psychiatrist. The animal must be prescribed as a treatment plan. A letter from a family physician is insufficient documentation.   

The ability to accommodate an ESA in campus housing is dependent on room type availability. ESA’s are not allowed in the classroom. You are not permitted to bring an animal to campus housing unless your ESA application has been approved.

You can find more information about priority housing, including more information about Emotional Support Animals, on our FAQ page.

Deadline to provide the full package for ESA application for campus housing:  

  • February 1: For returning students  
  • May 1: For incoming (first-year) students 


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Accessible parking and transportation 

Accessible parking on campus 

UBC Okanagan offers accessible parking for persons whose disability or health condition limits their mobility. Any faculty, staff, student, or any other person who is associated with the University who has a disability or health condition which limits their mobility may request accessible parking with appropriate medical documentation, and/or a blue provincial SPARC BC parking permit or City of Kelowna Accessible Parking Permit. This includes persons whose mobility limitations are temporary due to injury or short-term health conditions. 

Accessible Parking for Faculty and Staff 

Contact the Human Resources Workplace Reintegration & Accommodation Program (WRAP): 

Accessible Parking for Students 

  • If you have a valid SPARC Pass or City of Kelowna Disabled Parking Pass, go directly to the UBC Okanagan Parking Services for an accessible parking permit. 
  • For students with temporary injuries or conditions affecting parking accessibility, complete the UBCO Accessible Parking Application form and provide your medical documentation to the DRC.  
  • You will be responsible for any fees or costs associated with having a temporary accessible parking permit. 

Learn more about parking information and locations  


Getting to campus 

You can access UBC Okanagan using a variety of transportation methods. See the Kelowna Regional Transit System website for more information on transit options, including the HandyDART. 

U-Pass exemptions 

Any UBCO student that meets one or more of the following criteria may request an exemption from U-Pass: 

  • The student is a registered user of HandyDart in the Kelowna region. 
  • The student has a demonstrated disability which has been verified by the UBCO Disability Resource Centre and cannot use public transit due to their disability. 

For more information about U-Pass, refer to the UBCSUO.


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Accessible events 

To request ASL interpreting or captioning for an event, faculty, and staff should complete the Captioning & Interpreting for Events Request Form on our DRC Forms webpage. 

For any inquiries about accessibility for events, please contact


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Accessible and All-Gender Washrooms 

Please see the UBC Equity & Inclusion Office website for more information on where to find Accessible and All Gender Washrooms on campus.


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