How to Make Your Parking Lot ADA Compliant

In today’s society, it is vital to comply with, not only, the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, but to listen to the voices of the differently-abled. You have a responsibility to your fellow people to create a parking lot that is easily accessible to those with varying disabilities. This article is here to tell you just how to do that.

Van Accessibility
By law, it is a requirement to have a van accessible space in a parking lot. The amount of van accessible spaces you need changes based on how many standard spaces you need total. A good rule of thumb for you to easily remember this is one van accessible space for every six standard spaces. If you have six spaces, the law requires a minimum of one van space. If you have seven spaces, the law requires you to have two van spaces.

If there are separate buildings across a large parking lot, you will likely be required to put accessible spaces at the other building as well. Buildings considered to be different facilities or blocked off by walls, rails, or other interfering passageways require there own accessible parking spaces.

Each space “must be located on the shortest accessible route of travel to an accessible facility entrance.” If there are multiple entrances to a facility, disperse the spaces between accessible entrances. You must also require easy access to terminals that require parking meters, elevators, ramps, and pay stations.

Other Helpful Advice
Ramps, whether curb ramps or parallel ramps, need to be connected to the access aisles. Please do not place any objects into the access aisles, as this will prohibit differently-abled folks from being able to use it properly. For parallel ramps, the minimum width required is 36″, but guidelines recommend 60″.

Identification is a requirement by law. If a parking lot has fewer than four spaces, a sign is not required for the accessible space. Otherwise, you are required to have signs identifying which spaces are accessible to those with disabilities. The signs need the universal handicap symbol, to be 60″ in the air, and van accessible spaces must be labeled as such.

Compliance is Your Friend
ADA compliance is a lot to take in at first, but it is well worth the extra steps to provide access to the one in five people who are disabled around the world. Remember to have one van accessible spot for every six spaces, location on the shortest accessible route to the accessible entrance, accessible ramps, and signs identifying the handicap spots. With these simple tips, you are well on your way to making your parking lot ADA compliant.

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