Pierce County community meetings aim to make sidewalks, ramps ADA compliant

Local residents are invited to help Pierce County prioritize projects that will bring pedestrian facilities, such as sidewalks and ramps, located in public right-of-way in unincorporated Pierce County into compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

The county will host four public meetings in November to gather feedback on which types of issues pose the biggest impact to accessibility, such as obstructions in the sidewalk or steep ramps, and which locations are most important for the public to be able to reach without barriers to accessibility, such as schools, libraries, and shopping centers.

“This is an opportunity for our community to share their input on bringing existing pedestrian facilities into ADA compliance,” said Pierce County Public Works and Utilities Engineer Brian Stacy. “We will then develop a transition plan that will help us prioritize future projects to bring the facilities into compliance.”

In addition to community input, Pierce County will use ADA guidelines and standards to identify project locations with the highest need. The plan will guide the county when scheduling projects and requesting and allocating funding to complete the project list. Ultimately, all existing pedestrian facilities must be brought into compliance with ADA standards. The plan will not address expanding existing pedestrian facilities or building facilities in new areas.

Pierce County will host four public meetings in November to allow Public Works and Utilities staff to share information on its process for identifying facilities that are out of ADA compliance, show the results of the inventory, and ask attendees to take a brief survey about their priorities. The meeting schedule is as follows:

  • Thurs., Nov. 6, 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.: Bonney Lake Justice and Municipal Center, 9002 Main St. E., in Bonney Lake
  • Weds., Nov. 12, 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.: Sprinker Recreation Center, 14824 C St. S., in Tacoma
  • Tues., Nov. 18, 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.: Pierce County Central Maintenance Facility, 4812 196th St. E., in Spanaway
  • Thurs., Nov. 20, 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.: Pierce College Puyallup, College Center Building, Multipurpose Room A, 1601 39th Ave. SE, in Puyallup

Individuals attending the meetings should call Project Manager Dan Hansen at (253) 798-2288 to discuss any special accommodations.

Meeting materials and the survey will also be available online at piercecountywa.org/ADAtransition for those that cannot attend a meeting.

Pierce County is required, under Title II of the ADA and 28 CFR 35.105, to perform a self-evaluation to identify any barriers to persons with disabilities within the public right-of-way. Pierce County has spent the past year assessing facilities including sidewalks, curb ramps, pedestrian crossings, and traffic signal systems located in unincorporated Pierce County to determine whether they were in compliance with the ADA. Preliminary findings from the inventory are available online at piercecountywa.org/ADAtransition.