If you are a disability access expert, or just have questions, this is the place to share ideas, ask for help and post information about ADA Rule Changes, Liability Issues and upcoming Seminars and Training Sessions.
I work for a Dallas, Texas Mechanical Contractor. Here in Texas we have "TAS", Texas Acessibility Standards, which are intripitations of The ADA. TAS actually has Accessibility Inspectors for standard compliance. These "Potty- Police If you will, can actually show up at your place of business and request to perform an ADA/TAS inspection following a complaint filed for compliance issues. Additionally, new construction projects are often inspected for compliance months after the project has been completed & released by the city M.E.P. Inspectors, Building Inspector, and released for C of O. I look forward to sharing with any interested members my reccomendations; general knowledge and experiences!
In reply to Darrell:
ADA access compliance for new construction begins at the design stage with the architects. The check point for proper accessibilty design then rests with the "plan check" or "plan review". All this should take place before construction begins. The problem however is that ADA requirements are still new and unknown to many design professionals and building department inspectors. Because ADA law is 19 years old, there really is no excuse, but for many, it's just been "business as usual".
The business and property owners ultimately bear the burden of proper ADA access compliance and are the first targets in an access complaint or lawsuit.
In California, state law allows damages of $4,000 for each violation of discrimination due to violations of the ADA. Many businesses go bankrupt as the awards can reach six figures. New laws have been enacted to curb the rampant lawsuits, but ADA compliance still rests with the business and property owner (yes, both can be dragged into court).
As an ADA Access Specialist, I can help with ADA compliance in both design review and on-site inspections.
Post a question, or Contact me with your ADA questions - Jon Rose
Yes, access laws are definitely here to stay and it should go without saying that it's a good thing.
Access laws don't just benefit the disabled. I appreciated curb ramps when I was pushing a baby stroller, and accessible businesses help themselves when they're able to serve our entire population.
As an architect who has seen access laws develop from their inception, I view accessibility as a welcome challenge... and a responsibility.
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