Volume 45, Issue 9 - September 2010

Codes&Regulations

Revised ADA Regulations Affect Building Entrances, Windows

Attorney general Eric Holder has signed final regulations revising the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations, including its ADA Standards for Accessible Design. A number of the changes relate directly to building entrances which can include glass doors and windows.

The revised regulations will amend the DOJ’s Title II regulation, which applies to public entities, and the Title III regulation, which applies to public accommodations. Appendix B to the Title III regulation discusses major changes in the ADA Standards for Accessible Design and responds to public comments received on the proposed rules. According to Appendix B, a new requirement says if operable windows are provided for building users, then at least one window in an accessible space must be equipped with controls that comply with section 309, which deals with operable parts.

The appendix notes that “commenters generally supported this provision but some … asked whether the maximum five-pounds of force requirement of section 309 applies to the window latch itself or only to the force required to open the window. Section 309 applies to all controls and operating mechanisms, so the latch must comply with the requirement to operate with no more than five pounds of force.”

The 1991 Standards required at least 50 percent of public entrances be accessible. Section 206.4.1 of the 2010 Standards requires at least 60 percent of public entrances to be accessible. Under these revisions, when two public entrances are planned in a newly constructed facility, both entrances must be accessible.

For more information visit the Only Online section of www.usglassmag.com.
www.ada.gov

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