T. 12-3-93 202-PL-0052 DEC 6 1993 G. William Quatman, Esq.

Shughart Thomson & Kilroy Twelve Wyandotte Plaza 120 West 12th Street Kansas City, Missouri 64105-1929 Dear Mr. Quatman: I am responding to your letter asking for clarification of the alterations requirements of title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and this Department's regulation implementing title III. The ADA authorizes the Department of Justice to provide technical assistance to individuals and entities that have rights or responsibilities under the Act. This letter provides informal guidance to assist you in understanding the ADA and the Department's regulation. However, this technical assistance does not constitute a legal interpretation of the statute, and it is not binding on the Department. Your letter asks about the application of the alterations requirements of the ADA to an addition to a commercial facility. In the specific situation that you describe, the plan for an addition was initially developed by an architect before July 1991. Pursuant to the plan, an existing portion of the building that was altered was detached and relocated on the same site in August 1991. Construction of an addition to the existing building was begun after January 26, 1992, the effective date of the ADA. You have asked if the alterations requirements of the ADA apply to the construction commenced after January 26, 1992, or if the addition to the building is exempt from coverage because the project began before the effective date. Section 36.402(a) (2) of the Department's regulation implementing title III provides that an alteration to a commercial facility is subject to the requirements of the ADA if "the physical alteration of the property begins after that date."

Construction undertaken pursuant to a single plan, or under the authority of a single building permit, is a single action for purposes of determining ADA coverage. Therefore, if your client cc: Records, Chrono, Wodatch, Blizard, FOIA, Friedlander n:\Udd\blizard\adaltrs\quatman 01-02777 -2was acting to implement a single building plan, pursuant to a permit issued prior to the effective date, ADA coverage would not be triggered because the physical alteration of the facility began when the prefabricated building was detached from the existing building in August 1991. If, however, the project was undertaken in discrete segments, and a building permit was issued for the construction of the addition that did not include the relocation of the prefabricated building in the scope of the project, then the construction of the addition would be considered a separate project, subject to the ADA requirements because the physical alteration of the addition to the existing building began after the effective date of the Act. For your information, I am enclosing a copy of the Department's regulation implementing title III of the ADA and the Department's Title III Technical Assistance Manual, which was developed to assist individuals and entities subject to the ADA to understand the requirements of title III. I hope that this information is helpful to you. Sincerely,

John L. Wodatch Chief Public Access Section Enclosures

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