• Erika Springer-McCaffrey

December- Look at the Whole Picture

This month, we encourage you to look at the whole picture when designing a new building or designing a solution for barrier removal.

When working with new designs, remember its always easiest to incorporate your accessibility requirements in the planning stages instead of waiting until the end and trying to make them work.

When designing a barrier removal solution, the first idea is not always the best. Let's look at this example from the field.


Last month, while doing a site survey, we measured the parking spaces and found the cross slopes on the accessible space right of the access aisle to exceed 2%. Our initial recommendation was to repave and restripe the parking space.

However, when we took a step back and looked at the whole picture, we saw there was a simpler and less expensive option. The two accessible spaces and the access aisle were delimited by concrete sidewalks on both sides. When we measured the width, the space was 18 inches wider than it needed to be. We measured the space again this time only going to the required 96 inch width. Then we verified the slopes contained inside the required width and all were compliant.

We changed our recommendation to stripe a line at the 96" and stripe hatch marks to indicate no parking in the 18" that were not required and sloped too much. We normally would not recommend reducing the width when excess space has been provided, but in this situation it was important to identify that the area in question was not accessible because of the slope.


This sketch describes two accessible spaces with an access aisle between them. The excess width slope exceeded 2% so we recommended adding a stripe at the required width and hatch lines to indicate the space was not part of the accessible space.
Sketch of the parking configuration we found on site.

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