Blog » ‘Regulatory’ Category

The Gray Areas – What to do when you hit on one in the Access codes or ADA?

Posted on March 24th, 2016

Janis Kent, Architect, FAIA, CASp © March 2016 While the ADA Standards for Accessible Design (ADAS) have a tremendous amount of information, they can not cover all specific items and occurrences…hence the gray areas. Presuming you have verified the Scoping Requirements in Chapter 2 which provides information on whether it applies to your specific facility, […]


What is Not Transient Lodging – Alternatives & Access

Posted on September 14th, 2015

Aside from hotels, motels, and inns there are other types of vacation rentals that people use. Some fall under the definition of bed and breakfasts while others are considered short-term private rentals where people rent out their homes, or rooms within their homes whether thru an agent or thru online companies such as Airbnb.


Accessible Routes and Other Pedestrian Ways

Posted on July 20th, 2015

Over the years people use various terminology referring to areas where pedestrian move – circulation path, accessible route, path of travel, and accessible means of egress. But the question is, are all of these terms inter-changeable or do they have some nuance of difference in their meaning? The answer is, they do overlap each other, but there is indeed differences between each of the terms. It would be good to understand the differences since the ADA Standards has further requirements for each of these categories and limits some of what we can do within each.



Which Code or Regulation Applies During the Course of a Project?

Posted on June 8th, 2015

Generally when we design a project, we know what codes and regulations apply. But what happens if the project was shelved for a while and suddenly comes alive? Or for that matter what happens if the project is under construction during the transition from the 1991 ADA to the 2010 ADA and it is an ADA requirement that was not previously regulated.



Truncated Domes — To Use or Not To Use?

Posted on March 9th, 2015

Truncated domes, a form of detectable warnings, have been around for a while. It is one of those items which is not a great solution but there does not appear to be anything comparable. It is meant for people with a visual impairment to determine the boundary between a sidewalk and a street. It has been used to warn of hazards along a circulation path where there is no curb, although it can cause a problem for people with other types of disabilities and can even create a trip hazard for those who are able-bodied. Also, in new construction, there has been a trend to eliminate curbs so we have even a less of a separation between vehicles and pedestrians.



Multi-Family Housing — Which regulations pertain?

Posted on January 21st, 2015

In the last few years I have noticed more and more projects for both new and altered multi-family dwellings some of which are multi-use as well. These projects are both privately funded and publicly funded leading to the question – which regulations are applicable. There is no simple answer since, as usual, it depends. It depends on whether it is totally privately funded or whether it has some public funding or involvement. It also depends on whether it is new construction, a conversion from lofts or something similar, or whether it is an older building.



Proportional Spending — Exactly what is it?

Posted on September 4th, 2014

Proportional spending translates basically into how much additional money will be required to be spent over and above construction costs of a project to provide access for path of travel items. It only comes into play when performing alterations to primary function areas per ADA or all altered spaces per CBC, or altering the usability of a space, or additions to existing buildings or facilities. Some of these items may not even fall within the altered area but support the area itself. So if you are only doing new construction this does not pertain, although new construction and an altered area itself are required to totally comply.



Building Permits — Accessibility approved…or not?

Posted on April 29th, 2014

Janis Kent, Architect, CASp © April, 2014 Many owners, developers, architects, and other design professionals have the common belief that if they have a building permit or a certificate of occupancy then all requirements for accessibility have been met, both for the local jurisdiction as well as ADA. Not. When a building official provides approval […]


Leases & Accessibility – What now?

Posted on May 6th, 2013

With the passing of California Senate Bill 1186 and its affect on the Civil Code, there are numerous questions about new lease requirements. Basically if you lease any commercial property from July 1, 2013 onwards, the lease form or rental agreement will need to state whether the property being leased has had a CASp inspection. […]


Alterations To Existing Buildings — How Much Extra Do I Have to Spend?

Posted on September 27th, 2012

You are altering an existing building. You know that the portion being altered is required to meet today’s standards of accessibility, but is that all that needs to be done? The answer to that question for the most part is no. Per the ADA when altering a primary function area you are required to alter […]


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