For most retail businesses, the parking lot is one of the most important features and serves as a starting point for customers. Having a freshly paved and painted parking lot can enhance the perception of any business, but this upgrade can cause issues with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) design.
If you are planning to make renovations to your parking lot, you may have to comply with 2010 ADA standards.
This is an area that can cause confusion. By law, your parking lot was compliant with ADA standards because of a provision in ADA Title III regulations called Safe Harbor.
Safe Harbor allows buildings that were developed or altered before March 15, 2012 to abide by 1991 standards.
When you make changes – even if it is something as small as re-striping or re-surfacing a parking lot – your design may have to comply with 2010 ADA standards.
A few exterior features that changed from 1991 to 2010.
Access aisle wider and shall be marked so as to discourage parking in
Handicap parking signs must be a minimum 60 inches above the finished floor or ground
Increase in number of van access spaces; one per 6 parking spots
Other ADA standards you should be aware of; accessible parking spaces, van-access parking, location, and number of spots.
If you are looking to upgrade your parking lot, you might want to consult an expert. They will evaluate your property and develop a site plan that addresses ADA design requirements.
If you want more information on ADA, visit www.ada.gov.