During Purdue University’s Civil Engineering Professional Development Seminar (CEPDS), Brian Pierson, PE, a Project Team Leader in United’s Transportation Department, presented guidelines for maintaining ADA access during construction. Brian served as the civil design manager for the Cultural Trail in downtown Indianapolis. He understands the importance of meeting all ADA requirements upon project completion and he also knows that maintenance of the existing accessible routes during construction translates into a successful project.
The MUTCD and Indiana Design Manual clearly establish the need for maintenance of traffic plans addressing all roadway users, including pedestrians with disabilities. Providing access during construction for the wide range of disabilities covered under these requirements can be daunting. However, with a good understanding of the laws, standards, and best practice guidelines established for this type of work, a designer can provide plans that adequately address the situation and provide the necessary accommodations. By determining the best route and using the appropriate signage and detectable barriers, the duration and extent of impacts to accessible travel paths can be minimized, if not, completely eliminated.