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Wheel Pad

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A Wilmington architecture company is getting international recognition for its latest creation -- Made in Vermont living space that is making life easier for those adapting to debilitating injuries.

It's only 200 square feet, but the purpose it serves is immeasurable. "Making home accessible to people who are recovering or working towards a long term situation, is truly wonderful," said Megan Russell, a home health care provider.

When someone just gets out of the hospital, or rehab, after suffering a debilitating injury, it can be difficult to immediately find a place to live that is suitable for their needs.  That's where Wheel Pad comes in. "What if there was this accessible bedroom and bathroom that you could attach to your mom's house or your dad's house or your cousin's house?" said Julie Lineberger.  Lineberger and her husband, Joseph Cincotta, co-own LineSync Architecture.  They came up with the design several years ago. "Joseph has 500 million ideas a year and I said, I'm going to make this one happen."

"We were looking at this in 3-D back in 2010.  It doesn't actually convey the feeling of actually walking into the space and to say wow that is working out really just fine," Cincotta said.

"The doors are kind of cool, they swing in both directions which is a huge advantage when you're in a wheelchair.  This is a track that allows us access to the toilet in a sling," Russell said.

They received input from people who have gone though these struggles to those in the health care industry. "The fact that the shower and toilet are together is going to eliminate a lot of risks of falls during transfers," Russell said.

The prototype sits here in Wilmington, but it was actually built in Northfield by Norwich University students who fell in love with the concept after learning about it through a business competition. "We worked with engineering students, civil engineering students, architecture students, kind of a collaborative effort," said Jesse Couture with LineSync Architecture.

"It was an important project for them.  They saw the goal, the mission of the project, the value behind it," Daniel Gehering with LineSync Architecture.

"Norwich University is the largest military school in our country. One of our largest customers, I'm sad to say, are going to be injured service members, or veterans," Lineberger said. "They've already sacrificed so much for our country, how can we then support them to be active members of our community as quickly as possible?"

At a time when a person's spirits need to be lifted, this small Wheel Pad provides an enormous boost.  

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