Keeping Your Asphalt Parking Lot ADA Compliant

Keeping Your Asphalt Parking Lot ADA Compliant

Jan 10 2023

There are several forms of safety and compliance that public facilities must adhere to, any some of these apply to parking lots and any related areas. One great example here is ADA compliance, which speaks to the 1990 Americans With Disabilities Act – one that requires certain protections against discrimination for anyone who lives with a disability of any kind.

At Asphalt Masters, we’re happy to assist with a number of parking lot needs, including parking lot striping and repair for any lot you manage. How do ADA compliance rules compare to other forms of compliance that may be in consideration for your building and lot, and how can you ensure your parking lot is always in full ADA compliance? Here are some basics.

Comparing ADA Compliance and Other Types

First and foremost, it’s important to realize that ADA compliance is not the same as certain other types. Code compliance, for instance, is an area that’s often confused here – but ADA compliance is about protecting the legal rights of individuals with disabilities, while code compliance is about ensuring that your lot meets certain state or local building codes.

When evaluating a parking lot’s ADA compliance level, certain criteria will be looked at more closely – such as the number of accessible parking spaces that are available in your lot, and how wide those spots need to be. Other details may include making sure handicapped accessibility ramps are properly marked, and ensuring that any signage or other communications about the lot comply with existing laws in your state.

Possible Results of Non-Compliance

If your parking lot is not in compliance with ADA requirements, there can be a number of possible results. Of course, it’s important to remember that non-compliance is not always intentional – but simply being unaware of the laws and rules in place can still lead to violations.

In some cases, an audit or inspection may be ordered by the state or local government – and this can lead to fines and other penalties for non-compliance. Furthermore, it’s possible that a lawsuit may be filed if any person feels they have suffered discrimination or unfair treatment due to the lack of ADA compliance in your lot. In cases of repeated non-compliance, a court may order that your lot be completely shut down – so it’s in your best interest to stay aware of the laws and regulations surrounding ADA compliance.

Major Elements of ADA Parking Lot Compliance

While this is not meant to be an exhaustive list, and you should check the official ADA guidelines for the full one, here are some of the most important parts of ADA compliance for parking lots:

  • Shortest acceptable route to the building: If a person with a disability is able to make it from the parking lot to the building, they should have access to the shortest route possible.
  • Number of accessible spaces:  Your total number of accessible spaces must meet or exceed those recommended by the ADA. For lots with fewer than 25 spaces, at least one space must be accessible. For every additional 25 spaces, one more accessible space must be added.
  • Van accessibility: At least one of every six accessible parking spaces needs to be van-accessible. If only one accessible parking space exists, it must be van-accessible.
  • Proper signage: Proper signage must be used to indicate that a parking spot is accessible, and it must comply with the ADA’s official requirements.

There are also certain cases or building types where special requirements will be present. At hospital outpatient facilities, rehabilitation centers and others, for instance, there are even greater requirements that will typically be put into place.

Importance of Parking Lot Striping

As you may have already guessed while reading to this point, parking lot striping is a very important piece of the puzzle when it comes to ADA compliance. While having the right number of accessible spaces is a start, those spots also need to be clearly marked – and that’s where parking lot striping becomes important.

Properly striped parking lot lines help ensure that all ADA-compliant spaces are easily identifiable, both from a distance and up close. This is especially true when it comes to van-accessible spots, as they require significantly more space than a standard ADA spot. Striping and other markings also help to ensure that all parking spaces are used properly and by the right people – so even if your lot is up to code in terms of numbers, you won’t get full compliance without proper striping.

Color Considerations

When it comes to coloring for parking lot stripes, the ADA does allow some flexibility. They don’t specify exact colors that need to be used, but they do require that the paint contrasts enough with the background to be easily seen. In general, light colors like yellow or white are best for parking lot stripes, but blue and other bright hues can also work in some cases.

Ensuring that your parking lot is ADA compliant is essential in today’s day and age – and while it may seem daunting at first, a few simple steps can go a long way towards helping you protect yourself from potential legal action or fines. By ensuring that your parking lot meets all the necessary requirements and making sure to keep everything properly striped, you’ll be one step closer to total compliance.

For more here, or to learn about any of our parking lot striping or repair services, speak to our team at Asphalt Masters today.