Modifying root behavior

I am trying to figure out if I can replicate some changes made to a staging environment on my Local environment.

On staging, there is a directory for some includes the the client uses independently of WordPress, and I need to include them in a couple pages in my WP build. They have the includes located in the directory above /public_html/ (where WP is installed) and have done some sort of modification so that I can use simply require_once "includes.php"; instead of require_once "../includes.php";.

I will probably end up using a php switch/if statement to determine whether I’m on local or staging and get the correct file path that way, or even just move the files right into public with the WP install to achieve what I want locally. I was mostly just curious if there was anything I can adjust to achieve a similar root structure in Local.

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