Applying Accessibility Guidelines to Your Site
How did we end up with so many accessibility guidelines and standards? Which guidelines and standards apply to your site? The following information will demystify accessibility guidelines and standards.
As explained earlier in this guidebook, accessibility laws have been enacted and updated since 1968. Here is a brief history of the guidelines for buildings, recreation facilities, and trails:
- American National Standards Institute (ANSI)—
1969 to 1980. The first accessibility guidelines used
by Federal agencies under the Architectural Barriers
- General Services Administration Accessibility
Guidelines—1980 to 1984. The General Services
Administration (GSA) developed its own set of guidelines
for all buildings other than those of the U.S.
Department of Housing and Urban Development, the
U.S. Department of Defense, or the U.S. Postal Service.
Those agencies developed their own guidelines.
- Uniform Federal Accessibility Standards (UFAS)—
1984 to 2006. These standards updated and expanded
the GSA accessibility guidelines. The standards
were adopted under ABA and applied to all federally
funded facilities, unless there was a higher standard
of accessibility for that type of structure required by
other legal standards or guidelines.
- Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility
Guidelines (ADAAG)—1991 to 2010. ADAAG
explains how to apply the Americans with Disabilities
Act (ADA) of 1990 in the built environment. These
guidelines apply to services provided by State and
local governments, and public accommodations, such
as motels and hotels.
- Americans with Disabilities Act/Architectural Barrier
Act Accessibility Guidelines (ADA/ABAAG) of
2004. Issued by the U.S. Access Board, these guidelines were developed as a merger and update of UFAS and
ADAAG requirements. Chapters 1 and 2 contain application,
administration, and scoping requirements. The
100 and 200 series apply only to those entities covered
by ADA, (State and local government entities and private
entities open to the public) and are NOT for Federal
agency use. The F100 and F200 series apply only
to facilities constructed by, for, or on behalf of Federal
agencies. Chapters 3 through 10 provide the technical
specifications that apply to all entities, unless the State
or Federal agency has its own accessibility guidelines
that are an equal or higher standard.
- Architectural Barriers Act Accessibility Standards
(ABAAS) of 2006. The GSA, standard-setting agency
for Forest Service facilities, adopted the ABA portion
of ADA/ABAAG as the standard for all agencies
under its standard-setting jurisdiction. The new
ABAAS replaced UFAS.
- ADA Standards for Accessible Design (ADASAD)
of 2010. The U.S. Department of Justice adopted the
ADA portion of ADA/ABAAG for use by State and
local government entities and private entities open to
the public. ADASAD is effective as of March 15, 2012.
- Outdoor Developed Areas Accessibility Guidelines
(ODAAG) of 2012. The U.S. Access Board developed
ODAAG as a component of ADA/ABAAG. It contains
accessibility guidelines for outdoor developed recreation
areas and trails that are federally funded. Federal
agencies may develop and use their own guidelines
only if they are an equal or higher standard.
- Forest Service Outdoor Recreation Accessibility Guidelines (FSORAG) and Forest Service Trail Accessibility Guidelines (FSTAG), 2012 Updates. These guidelines are an equal or higher standard than ODAAG for outdoor recreation facilities and trails on the National Forest System. These guidelines must be used for the design, construction, alteration, purchase, or replacement of recreation sites, facilities, constructed features, and trails that meet FSTAG criteria on the National Forest System (FSM 2330 and FSM 2350).
The Forest Service and those working with or for the Forest Service on National Forest System land must comply with the following enforceable guidelines and standards when designing, constructing, or altering any facility or component addressed by those standards on National Forest System land.
Architectural Barriers Act Accessibility Standards (ABAAS). Forest Service drinking fountains, toilet facilities, parking lots and spaces, cabins, and administrative buildings are among the components covered by ABAAS. The complete ABAAS is available at http://www.access-board.gov/guidelines-and-standards/buildings-and-sites/about-the-aba-standards/aba-standards.
Forest Service Outdoor Recreation Accessibility Guidelines (FSORAG) and Forest Service Trail Accessibility Guidelines (FSTAG). These guidelines must be used for the design, construction, alteration, purchase, or replacement of recreation sites, facilities, constructed features, and trails on the National Forest System. The complete FSORAG and FSTAG are available at http://www.fs.fed.us/recreation/programs/accessibility/.
Table 1 shows examples of different facilities that are covered by ABAAS, FSORAG, and FSTAG.
Apply only within National Fores System boundaries)
(Apply only within National Forest System boundaries)
|Buildings, Boating, and Fishing||Recreation Site Features||Hiker and Pedestrian Trails|
|All Buildings, including:
Building components such as:
Boating and fishing facilities, including:
New or reconstructed:
Trails that are new or altered