ADA Compliance: Tri Counties Bank 150 150 Menemsha

ADA Compliance: Tri Counties Bank

When you walk into a building — a bank, office headquarters, school, restaurant — do you notice the type of handle on the door? Or the amount of force required to open it? Do you ever go into a bathroom unsure if you’ll be able to use it? Or walk up to a water fountain, but can’t reach it?

Millions of disabled U.S. adults are affected by these seemingly small details. The sad reality is that so many buildings still aren’t ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliant. That’s where Menemsha comes in.

It’s our job to find those details and put together a plan to fix them so businesses can be accessible to all customers. We’re not new at this, so you can trust our work will be diligent, ensuring even the tiniest details are covered.

In one of these projects, Menemsha worked with Tri Counties Bank to assess their ADA conditions in 69 branches across Northern California. The work is extremely detailed, requiring hundreds of pages of documentation and planning, but is also extremely necessary.

In each branch, we started by surveying to find what was and wasn’t compliant. Then we put together a plan to remediate the issues. Finally, we implemented the corrections, managing the construction and ensuring the changes were compliant.

As a building owner, you are responsible for ensuring that your building is accessible. Even with extenuating circumstances, you are required to remove all barriers and/or provide reasonable accommodations. There are specifics and exemptions that may apply under certain conditions; however, the intent of building code and federal law is to make buildings accessible to all.

“There’s no such thing as grandfathering a building,” Menemsha Sr. Director of Architecture Yuri Osipov said. “People think ‘Oh, that building was built a long time ago, so it doesn’t need to be compliant,’ but that’s not how it works as a building owner.”

The key with ADA compliance is to address accessibility barriers before they become actual issues. It is important to take a proactive approach to accessibility remediation. Having a plan on how these barriers will be remediated is critical, starting with the simple things we can do immediately like updating signage, hardware, and removal of non-permanent obstructions. The remaining items we can plan for collectively to address as you continue to remodel your building. The most important thing here is to have a plan in place and execute it accordingly.

“Accessibility is here to stay,” Osipov said. “People tend to push it off to the side, but it is not going away. Having a proactive approach is the best solution”

This is not an easy process, but it’s also not Menemsha’s first rodeo. We provide all of your resources under one roof — the architect, eprogram manager, estimator, builders, surveyors — providing reassurance that we will be the best communicators, both with you and with each other, allowing nothing to slip through the cracks.

It’s our job to find the things that most people overlook. At Menemsha, we individually tailor our ADA compliance assessments and Site Accessibility Reports to each client’s needs. We provide every piece of the puzzle turnkey, and even provide assistance in developing long-term ADA strategies. With Menemsha, you can be confident you’re getting a meaningful partner in ensuring your business can serve every customer, regardless of ability.

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