The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) specifies in great detail the design and construction standards for compliant wheelchair ramps. With few exceptions, ramps must meet a variety of specifications involving surface, slope and structure. There are some exceptions to these standards, but they are few and far between. In some cases, physical limitations in the built environment that predate the ADA make an ADA-compliant ramp impossible or cost prohibitive.
Below are examples of different approaches to wheelchair access, some temporary, some creative workarounds and others that reflect ADA standards.
Disclaimer. When possible and where required, ramps must meet specifications to ensure the safety of users and the general public. Keep in mind that unstable, poorly constructed or sited ramps can create more problems than they attempt to solve. Always seek expert advice when planning and constructing ramps or other means of access. There, that's the disclaimer. So enjoy the photos and check back often to see what we find in the future.
|This temporary ramp structure served a historic building during a construction phase that included a powered lift.|
|This building owner combined a wheelchair-friendly transition with a raised patio that could accommodate outdoor seating.|
|This sturdy, simple, but fairly steep transition may be tough for some users to negotiate, but the angled sides reduce a potential tripping hazard in the sidewalk.|
|A permanent ramp adjacent to an ADA parking space serves a popular restaurant in Eastern Idaho. Note the handrails, which are required for ramps with a slope greater than 1/12.|
|Another great example of traditional downtown retail districts where sidewalk and floor elevations allow for natural and elegant transitions.|
|Fabulous wine and beer emporium with historic access.|