Accessibility Requirements Update DOJ Now Enforcing New ADA Title III Standards for Public Accommodations
By GEOFF WEIRICH & SHERRY NIELSEN
As of March 15, 2012, compliance with the new 2010 ADA Title III Standards was required for all new construction and alterations, and for guidance regarding readily achievable barrier removal, at all places of public accommodation. In a brief reprieve, however, the Department of Justice has deferred the deadline for compliance with its controversial new standards regarding access to swimming pools to May 21, 2012. In 2010 the DOJ adopted revised Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations and design standards (2010 Standards). The new regulations became effective on March 15, 2011, subject to a one-year phase-in period governing accessibility requirements for places of public accommodation.
The 12 categories of public accommodations are:
places of lodging;
establishments serving food or drink;
places of exhibition/entertainment;
places of public gathering;
public transportation terminals;
places of public display/collection;
places of recreation;
places of education;
social service center establishments; and
places of exercise.