The Oregon Department of Transportation recently provided an update to a 2022 report regarding its ongoing effort to revamp 26,000 sidewalk curb ramps within the statewide transportation system, bringing all of them into American with Disabilities Act or ADA compliance.
[Above photo by Oregon DOT]
As of December 2022, the agency said over 6,000 of those 26,000 ramps are now ADA-compliant, with upgrades improving safety and providing more seamless access for people using mobility devices, parents with strollers, pedestrians, and people on bikes and skateboards.
“Every Oregonian deserves access to a safe and reliable transportation system and for too long that hasn’t been a reality for many of our most vulnerable travelers,” said Mac Lynde, administrator for the delivery and operations division at Oregon DOT, in a statement.
“With funding now lined up, we’re going to transform our transportation system to make it accessible for every user,” Lynde noted.
The agency said constructing or remediating a sidewalk curb ramp requires many steps and people to achieve full ADA compliance. For example:
- Designing curb ramps to fit the location using national best practices and guidance from the U.S. Access Board.
- Removing barriers in existing curb ramps like the size of the lip from the street to the curb ramp entrance.
- Making the slope on the ramp less steep and creating more room to maneuver.
- Ensuring inspection values (percent of slope, width, truncated domes, etc.) are within the acceptable range for a compliant ramp.
Such improvements will sometimes be integrated into larger, multifunctional transportation investment projects and sometimes will be stand-alone single function ADA curb ramp improvements, Oregon DOT noted.
The agency estimates the total cost of its statewide ADA curb ramp replacement projects – from 2017 through 2032 – to be just over $1.4 billion.