# 72 III-1.2000 III-7.

5145 DJ 202-PL-348

May 20, 1993

Mr. Robert H. Linn 1140 North Providence Road Media, Pennsylvania 19603 Dear Mr. Linn: This letter is in response to your inquiry of September 30, 1992, about the definition of a place of public accommodation and the requirements for toilet rooms under the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") and the ADA's architectural Standards for Accessible Design. We apologize for the delay in responding. The ADA authorizes the Department of Justice to provide technical assistance to individuals and entities having rights or obligations under the Act. This letter provides informal guidance to assist you in understanding the ADA's requirements. However, it does not constitute a legal interpretation or legal advice, and it is not binding on the Department of Justice. Your letter inquires about "manufacturing type facilities" and whether certain kinds of public contact would bring them within the definition of public accommodation in title III of the ADA. We begin by assuming that the types of facilities you are describing do not fall within any one of the twelve categories of places of public accommodation listed in the statute. 42 U.S.C. 12181(7). Accordingly, they are "commercial facilities" having obligations under the statute for alterations and new construction, but not for barrier removal in existing facilities. You ask first whether visits to this type of facility by vendors or outside salespersons are activities that would change

the statutory categorization for the facility and bring it into the category of a place of public accommodation. Second, you ask whether the portion of a manufacturing facility where job applications are accepted and interviews take place qualifies as a place of public accommodation. If an entity does not fall within one or more of the twelve categories of public accommodations designated in the statute, then it is not a place of public accommodation within the meaning of title III. The fact that such facilities may be frequented by salespersons or job applicants does not alter that conclusion. However, as your letter acknowledges, a commercial facility may have an independent obligation under title I of the statute to make some accommodations for job applicants with disabilities. Your letter also inquires about the requirements of the Standards for Accessible Design with respect to toilet rooms. The Department of Justice cannot certify or approve particular designs for toilet rooms or any other architectural features. However, the drawing you have provided appears to comply with the requirements of the Standards. Other configurations might also comply with the Standards, including, for instance, a room of slightly smaller dimensions, with the toilet and sink on the long wall across from the door. Using such a design, the room could be approximately 6'-8" by 5'-0", and would allow for both a front and side transfer from a wheelchair to the toilet. The design you have provided does not appear to allow for a side transfer. I hope this information is useful to you in understanding the requirements of the ADA and the Standards for Accessible Design. Sincerely,

John L. Wodatch Chief Public Access Section Enclosure Title III regulation