During the construction or renovation of an Orange County commercial space, one of the primary goals is to ensure that everyone can gain access to as much of the building as possible with a minimum of effort. This means making the appropriate accommodations for individuals with disabilities as well. In fact, every commercial development must meet the standards of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Failing to meet or exceed federal ADA standards could mean fines as high as $75,000 for the first time and up to $150,000 for a subsequent violation. Another reason to ensure compliance is to avoid liability issues that could lead to expensive and time-consuming litigation. Some of the areas of a commercial development that need particular attention are entrances and exits, parking lots, bathrooms, water fountains and more. Even the type and condition of the flooring, the width of doorways and other structural issues require attention during construction.
It may be more of a challenge to renovate an existing building that is not in compliance with the ADA. However, even construction projects can encounter challenges with compliance, especially if a contractor or owner does not know that a change to the regulations happened during the project. The ADA also requires quite specific measurements for some things. It’s important to know what those are during the design process in order to take any need for a larger space into account.
It would be beneficial to keep up with any changes that may apply to a certain commercial development in order to avoid any issues later. An Orange County attorney experienced in legal issues concerning the development of commercial property could prove invaluable in meeting that and other needs of the project. At the worst, the project will require a change order to remain in compliance, which would more than likely be preferable to paying fines and having to redo a portion of the structure entirely.