August 28, 2014

Access Today

August issue of Access Today.  NCA Instructors Make Trip to Beautiful Upstate New York's Fort Drum.  NPS Names Accessibility Chief.  Access Board Issues Tech Guide. New Docs Published for Fitness Equipment.  DOJ Initiates Proposed Rules for Movies.

August 27, 2014
Photo of Jeremy Buzzell

NPS Names Accessibility Chief

The National Park Service has named disability advocate, Jeremy Buzzell as the Branch Chief for the Accessibility Management Program.  Buzzell began in his new position on August 25.  He joins the National Park Service after working for more than 20 years in disability policy with different federal agencies including the U.S. Department of Education (DOE), the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and the Library of Congress.
June 27, 2014

DOE Issues Finding on St Johns County School Playgrounds: CalRecycle Publishes Best Practices for Playground Owners

The U.S. Department of Education has issued findings regarding four playgrounds operated by the St Johns County (Florida) School District. Meanwhile, the State of California's CalRecycle has published a new document of best practices for the use of recycled tires as playground surfaces.

March 24, 2014
Soiltac Powder Topical applied by trail crew.

NCA Publishes Results of Trail Surfaces Study

The National Center on Accessibility has published results of its national study of trail surfaces.  The project assessed the firmness and stability of 11 different types of natural aggregate and treated soil surfaces over a four-year period to determine their effectiveness after exposure to the elements, freeze and thaw cycles, and other factors. The study was sponsored by the U.S. Access Board.

October 30, 2013
A woman measures the amount of loose fill engineered wood fiber displaced at a play component.

NCA Publishes Results of Playground Surface Study

Results from a five-year Indiana University study of accessible play surfaces reveal the importance of proper installation and regular maintenance.

September 26, 2013
A man seated in a wheelchair and a woman seated on a bench watch Old Faithful.

Access Board Issues Final Rule for Outdoor Developed Areas

On September 26, the U.S. Access Board published its Final Rule on accessibility standards for outdoor developed areas including trails, picnic areas, campgrounds, scenic viewing areas and beaches.
January 17, 2013
Mother and daughter getting ready to go biking.

5 Tips to Help Your Customers with Disabilities Keep Their New Year’s Resolutions

It’s a new year filled with new promise. We all hear it every year …. “This will be the year I resolve to…. be more active… get physically fit… lose the weight!”  The National Center on Accessibility team has come up with five simple tips for recreation program coordinators and facility managers to help your customers with disabilities keep their resolutions and stay physically active in 2013!
December 17, 2012
Boat docks

Michigan DNR Seeks Input to Boating Access

Have you ever boarded a boat from the dock? One leg is stretched out springing forward to the boat as the back leg pushes off from the pier. Holding your breath, it's a giant leap of faith over the water and you are just hoping to land safely in the vessel. How do you make that gap over the water accessible for someone using an assistive device like a walker, wheelchair, cane, crutches or prosthetic? For this is the gap....o-v-e-r-t-h-e-w-a-t-e-r....that is not addressed by the accessibility standards. The 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design make the dock accessible to the water's edge and the proposed accessibility standards for passenger vessels make the boat accessible if it is an excursion boat, ferry, cruise ship, or other large passenger vessel. But, how do you create access for boaters with disabilities from the dock or boarding platform on to the passenger vessel? Since boating is a major recreation passtime in the state, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources is trying to solve exactly this problem and they want your input.

May 18, 2012
Recreation center staff check the operation of the pool lift.

DOJ Gives More Time for Existing Pools

On May 18, 2012, the US Department of Justice announced that it is adopting a final rule extending the compliance date for sections 242 and 1009 of the 2010 Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Standards for Accessible Design, as they relate to the provision of accessible entry and exit to existing swimming pools, wading pools, and spas (pools built before March 15, 2012). These provisions for existing pools of Title II and Title III entities will now take effect on January 31, 2013.
February 9, 2012

Readily Achievable Barrier Removal Checklists

The ADA National Network and Institute for Human Centered Design have recently updated the Checklist for Readily Achievable Barrier Removal.
January 2, 2012

ADA Compliance: What's the Big Deal About March 15, 2012?

When the U.S. Department of Justice adopted the 2010 ADA Standards for Accessible Design, there set into motion much information and MISinformation regarding compliance with the new standards. At NCA, we see a lot of marketing literature for "accessible" products and services. Recently there has been an influx of marketing to the parks and recreation field with misleading assertions about compliance with the new standards.

January 2, 2012
The accessibility team assesses the accessible parking space.

ADA Compliance: March 15, 2012 is a Starting Line, not a Deadline

As we get closer to the March 15, 2012 compliance date for the 2010 ADA Standards, the National Center on Accessibility staff continues to field questions from practitioners. Many questions are rooted in misinformation. There has been an influx of product advertisements warning facility operators to come into ADA compliance by March 15. The date has been falsely advertised in a sense as a "deadline" with statements to the effect that your facility must be retrofitted by this date or you run the risk of ADA litigation.  March 15, 2012 is not a deadline. If anything, the March 15, 2012 date should be viewed as a starting line.
May 24, 2011
Newly installed playground with unitary poured in place rubber surface.

First Year Findings on the Accessibility of Playground Surfaces Published

Do playground surfaces remain accessible for people with disabilities over time? A research team at the National Center on Accessibility (NCA) at Indiana University is attempting to answer that question.  Read more about the first year findings from the longitudinal study.