If you have ever glanced at the ADA Accessibility Guidelines for Buildings and Facilities (ADAAG), you will know that even the minimum ADA building requirements involve pages and pages of detailed guidelines. To save you the hassle of trolling through these volumes of information, Burnham’s ADA consultants can assist you in deciphering what you need to know, and advise you in how to implement ADA building requirements most efficiently. In addition, we will keep you notified of any amendments to these requirements.
Certainly no one would dispute the importance of making buildings accessible for disabled individuals. However, failing an inspection and having to redo thousands or even millions of dollars worth of work can be terribly frustrating. Using ADA consultants who are extremely knowledgeable about the requirements will ensure that your project avoids this eventuality.
The guidelines are very extensive and somewhat complex. For instance certain guidelines mandate that employee areas must be constructed in a manner that allows disabled people to enter and exit these areas, as do public or commercial spaces. However, there is a possible exemption for the employee area accessibility guideline. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, and some areas require accessibility while others do not. For instance, water slides and elevator shafts do not have to be accessible, but sport courts do. Certain buildings can qualify for an exemption to the ADA requirements if they can reasonably make an argument that modifying their structure will poorly impact their structural or architectural integrity.
The codes also cover matters such as the percentage of parking spots that must be designated as “disabled”. This percentage fluctuates depending on the total number of spots in the lot. For instance, parking lots with 401 to 500 spots are required to include 1.8% to 2.2% of their spots as disabled, whereas lots of over 500 spaces require 2%, and lots at outpatient healthcare facilities require up to 10% disabled spots.
Of course, this blog post does not address all of the ADA building requirements that you will encounter as you struggle to make your project compliant. However, you can be assured that our ADA consultants understand the codes and their nuances, and can advise you accordingly.