What’s Wrong Wednesday: Construction Company Blocks Accessible Parking Spaces

When construction interferes with an accessible pathway or parking, alternative pathways and/or accessible must be created.

Existing Parking Lots: Choose spaces that are level, close to an accessible entrance and near existing curb ramps. Mark or block off an existing parking space with cones, barricades, or pavement marking tape to create a new access aisle and use the accessibility symbol to designate the accessible spaces. If no existing curb ramps are available and the new parking spaces border on the sidewalk, place a portable curb ramp in the temporary access aisle to gain access to the sidewalk level

Temporary Parking Lots: Grass fields or dirt lots used as temporary parking areas usually have no marked spaces. Most likely, participants will arrive and be directed to a parking space.Accessible spaces must be created and held in reserve for people with disabilities.

Accessible parking spaces should be located where the surface is firm and stable. Dirt should be hard and compact and grassy areas closely cut to ground level. Loose sand, gravel, and overgrown grassy areas are too difficult to travel across for many people using wheelchairs or those who walk with difficulty. Sites that become slippery or muddy when wet will not be usable by everyone. If it is possible to find a paved lot with an accessible route, locate accessible parking there.

As with all accessible parking, those designated in temporary lots should be level and near accessible entrances. The space should be laid out in accordance with the Standards and identified with the accessibility symbol. Use crowd control fences, traffic cones, and/or similar barricades to set aside accessible parking areas, and designate each space with a sign displaying the accessibility symbol. Create an accessible route from the parking access aisles to the event entrance.

You may need to place plastic or rubber matting over unstable natural surfaces to make them navigable for short distances (see “Natural Surfaces” in Chapter 4).

People using wheelchairs should not have to travel behind parked cars or cross vehicular traffic lanes. If this is unavoidable, the pedestrian route (especially where the route crosses traffic lanes), access aisles, and parking spaces should be clearly defined. Methods and materials to use include chalk or aerosol paint, ropes and stanchions, crowd control fences, and barricades at key points.

(image description: white building materials and a green porta potty is in the accessible parking space)