Navigating in urban open spaces is still a challenging task for people in a wheelchair. Wheelchair bound people go less outside because of the way the public open space of their direct living environment is shaped. There are guidelines for wheelchair accessibility, however they appear not to be sufficient. This research focuses on the impact of the direct living environment in urban districts on people in a wheelchair. The case study for this research is the Tarwewijk in Rotterdam. The concept of phenomenology formed the basis of the method ‘phenomenological rolls’, in which the focus lies on first hand experiencing the multisensory and emotional impact of the public open space while rolling in a wheelchair through the Tarwewijk. The experience is recorded with video and in written text. The senses and feelings formed the basis of a directed content analysis and resulted in an overview of the problems encountered shown in text, drawing and video. The evaluation on the impact on positive health of people in a wheelchair shows that the frequency and multi-sensory problems that people in a wheelchair encounter have a big impact on the perceived positive health. A semi-structured interview at the municipality of Rotterdam shows what problems and opportunities the municipality encounters when trying to make urban districts wheelchair accessible. The outcomes of the phenomenological rolls and interview serve as a basis for the research through design process in which a design strategy to improve the wheelchair accessibility in the Tarwewijk was formed. Plus Routes on which later the other streets can be connected when the opportunity arrives form the basis of this strategy. Cars get a less dominant place and slow infrastructure gets a higher priority. To conclude the outcomes of the research in the Tarwewijk are evaluated to determine how the generated knowledge can be used in other urban districts.