Code Corner: Reminder about Required ADA Signage
I believe we are all aware of the typical ADA signage requirements that virtually every project has. Most people are very aware of the ADA signage that is provided at handicapped designated parking spaces as well as the signage with Braille identifying each restroom. However, the Ohio Building Code, Section 1101.1 has several other locations where signage is required, which is sometimes not fully addressed. They include the following:
- Accessible areas of refuge required in Section 1007.5 or ADAAG standards. In an enclosed stairway, the area of refuge should be identified outside of the door which leads to the area of refuge.
- Accessible entrances where not all entrances are accessible. For example, if a building has 4 entrances, and 2 of them are accessible, the accessible entrances are to have ADA signage indicating they are accessible. Likewise, the entrances which are inaccessible are to have directional signage indicating the location of the accessible entrances.
- At each door to an egress stairway, exit passageway and exit discharge, signage shall be provided in accordance with Section 1011.3 OBC. This requirement is often overlooked, and not often enforced by building departments. However, it is a requirement. Basically, doors that lead to the exit discharge or to an egress stairway, though they may have a lit exit sign indicating exit, are to also have the ADA signage identifying the exit, once again with Braille.
If this requirement comes up at the time of a building wishing to gain an occupancy permit, it could cause a lot of consternation for the owner and/or contractor who must quickly find or order these required ADA signs in order to get the occupancy permit. It is better to indicate these required signs in your drawings and/or specifications so that this requirement is met and the signage will be in place prior to seeking an occupancy permit.
by Jim Mitchell
Principal, Executive Vice President, Director - Civic/Community Studio
Jim has been with M+A since 1981 and currently serves as the executive vice president of the company. Jim's favorite place to eat is Polaris Grille, and his favorite movie is Animal House.