The Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) - Expense vs Investment
by Monique Nelson on February 15th, 2011

Unless you have been on an extended vacation for the past few months, ignoring all news, emails and phone calls, you are undoubtedly familiar with the new regulations and updates made to the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). You may be impressed with the initiative, stressed by the obligations, or wandering somewhere in between the two emotions. Either way, you are probably creating a plan of action to ensure you are on your way to compliance.

To very vaguely and briefly name the important issues to the Commercial Pool Industry, public swimming pools and spas will be required to offer means of accessibility for disabled persons.

This may be in the form of installing lifts, or constructing zero entry platforms. These regulations will be enforced on all new construction or major renovations, coming into effect March 15, 2011. Compliance is required no more than one year later.

There is no question that these new regulations will constitute an expense. Installing a lift, for example, can cost upwards of a few thousand dollars. Many facility operators are shaking their heads, wondering where they are going to come up with the extra cash.

There are others, however, who are focusing on the silver lining. Yes, upgrades will be expensive. But they always are. And the driving force behind most upgrades is to increase or enhance business. This situation is no different.

If your facility is not currently accessible, you may not have an accurate vision of how many persons with disabilities would like to be able to enjoy your facility. When it becomes accessible, you are opening your facility to an entirely new market. You are welcoming a new spectrum of swimmers, and you may find that your business thrives with the new momentum.

Whether you view the new regulations as an expense or an investment, the fact remains that if you are planning to build or renovate, you will have to follow the letter of the law. One great way to offset the extra expenditure is to reduce current operating costs.

If you are not yet using a pool cover, it is a great time to consider adding a Heatsavr, liquid pool cover, automated system to your facility. One recent 3rd party case study reported a 40% decrease in operating costs. Would that help your budget in 2011?


Posted in General Information, Commercial Facilities, Reduce Energy    Tagged with americans with disabilities act, ADA, commercial pool, aquatics center, reduce operating costs, heatsavr, liquid pool cover, pool cover