As facilities open to the public, Posts are required to have adequate parking for individuals with disabilities. If your Post doesn’t meet the necessary accessible parking requirements, it could mean complaints, fines or costly litigation.
The 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design updated legal requirements first established by the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act for parking lots and access to public facilities. Due to updates to the law, facilities that were once in compliance of the older standards may lack compliance with the updated law.
The 2010 ADA Standards govern four aspects of parking spaces reserved for people with disabilities:
- Pavement markings
- Pavement slope
The law also specifies updated rules regarding the number of car and van-accessible spaces and entrance access. You can ensure equal access to your Post for all your members and guests by following these tips:
Ensure your Post has at least the required minimum number of accessible parking spaces, which varies depending on the total number of parking spaces in the lot. For a facility with one to 25 spots, at least one must be accessible to cars and vans. Larger lots will require more spaces.
Van-accessible spaces are required to offer a spot and access aisle that are each 96 inches wide, with vertical clearance of 96 inches. The rules also specify minimum signage and pavement markings to identify accessible parking spaces. Spots must have no more than a 2 percent pavement slope in any direction.
The 2010 ADA Standards include a “safe harbor” for facilities that are compliant with the 1991 Standards. Your Post will only need to make changes to be compliant with the new standards, if you are planning on parking lot improvements.
Plan to bring your parking into compliance with the latest regulation if your Post parking will be undergoing any planned alteration. The rules require parking areas that will be re-striped, seal coated, resurfaced or reconfigured be updated to meet the latest dimension, signage and pavement marking requirements.
Ensure you maintain your parking areas for all your Post’s members and guests. Complaints, fines or lawsuits can result if accessible parking spaces, access aisles and routes to the building entrance aren’t maintained in good repair. It’s also important to keep such areas clear of ice, snow and other debris.
Parking access is a key amenity for everyone at your Post. You can help ensure your Post is an equally welcoming space for all your members and guests by maintaining your parking facilities and making any changes as needed to comply with the latest ADA Standards.