Florida takes accessible parking seriously! Does your parking lot meet all of the Standards to serve your guests with disabilities?
Just for today, instead of worrying about people with invisible disabilities parking in an accessible space, I would like all of us to make sure that our parking lots are truly ACCESSIBLE and meet the needs of the accessible community.
Florida goes beyond the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design to make accessible parking comfortable for a broad population. In order to assure that a van with a lift can fit in any accessible space, ALL accessible spaces are 12 feet wide with a 60-inch wide accessible aisle. Every day, I park in lots that do not have accessible aisles with each accessible parking spot.
Did you know that when you RESURFACE and/or repaint your parking lot, accessible parking spaces must be corrected to the current ADA Standard?
Did you know that a person parking in an accessible spot should always have a 44-inch wide minimum ACCESSIBLE ROUTE to the building entrance? A person parking in an accessible spot should never have to walk or roll behind cars, other than their own, to reach the building entrance. Even with new construction all over Central Florida, I see parking lots without safely accessible routes.
Did you know that any type of accessible vehicle may park in the spot designated as a “Van Accessible?” The “VAN ACCESSIBLE” sign spot is informational, but not exclusive to vans.
Do you know why the bottom of the Accessible parking SIGN needs to be 60 inches minimum above the ground surface? So a driver can see it! I often find signs buried in bushes, attached to palm trees and mounted on short posts.
Did you know that there is a 98″ minimum HEIGHT CLEARANCE requirement for Accessible parking in parking garages or areas where a vehicle must pass under an overhead obstruction? In my beach condo ADA inspections, I often find all of the accessible parking spaces are located in parking garages that do not meet clearance! Since all of Florida’s accessible parking spaces are sized for vans with lifts, the lower vertical clearance prevents many vans from using these spaces.
Are the “towing” and $250 FINE SIGNS serious? YES. Since 1996, all accessible spots must have the International Symbol, “PARKING BY DISABLED PERMIT ONLY” and the penalty for illegal use of the space.
Please take a few minutes to see if your parking lot meets the ADA needs of your disabled employees and guests. If it doesn’t, please take ACTION! If you need an ADA Compliance Report and Action Plan for your property, we are available for Florida and the Eastern USA.