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Best Practices for Construction Designs to Meet ADA Standards

Updated: Dec 7, 2023

Are you building or remodeling your home or commercial space in Madison? Your construction design may be required to meet ADA standards.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities. The law requires accessible designs for construction and remodeling projects, including residential, civic, and commercial buildings. In short, almost all construction designs must meet ADA standards.

What Is an Accessible Design?

Accessible construction design means a better, safe, and more usable design. As per ADA, it requires accessible planning, designing, and construction to improve the usability of buildings for people with disabilities. So, from the inception of the concept design to the completion of construction, it is essential to achieve compliance with accessibility regulations. Doing so not only improves the usability of buildings or facilities but avoids legal issues and the related financial penalties that come with non-compliance. So how do you ensure your construction designs meet ADA standards? Here are some steps you can follow to achieve accessibility compliance.

1. Plan Accessibility from the Start

If you are retrofitting or remodeling, accessibility designs become more challenging. Therefore, for construction designs to meet ADA standards, it is crucial to include accessibility as a main part of the design right from the beginning. Everyone, including the owners, engineers, designers, architects, builders, consultants, and contractors, has the responsibility to assist and reinforce accessible designs. Everyone must understand the compliance plan and their roles and responsibilities.

You can check out the ADA standards for accessible design or work with local building inspectors or disability groups to formulate the best accessibility design that meets the ADA standards. Also, make sure to check the ADA accessibility guidelines.

2. Review Plans

Conduct plan reviews at various stages to ensure your construction project is in full compliance with relevant ADA standards for accessible design. By conducting plan reviews with qualified accessibility experts at different project cycles, any instance of non-compliance due to flawed details, specs, or non-compliant schedules, will be less frequent and corrected expeditiously. It also helps you identify barriers to compliance.

3. Make Project Oversight a Priority

Regular project oversight is a trouble-shooter that helps construction designs to meet ADA standards. Keep in mind that any deviation from the original plan or oversight can be costly once the construction begins. Most importantly, pay attention to construction documents. Ensure you have a proper interpretation of construction documents. Your construction supervisors or project managers will help you identify any plan deviation or oversight.

4. Site Inspection

Once the construction process has begun, conduct site inspections regularly to achieve accessibility compliance. Conducting site inspections at regular intervals helps you identify and ensure whether the construction follows the ADA standards for accessible design. Accessibility experts or local code inspectors can help identify non-compliance issues and suggest solutions.

If you need our help to handle your project, contact Westring Construction in Madison. We are a full-service design/build residential and light commercial general contractor with extensive knowledge and experience in complying with ADA’s accessibility design requirements. We can ensure your building and construction designs meet ADA standards.

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