Hurricane Sandy has come and (thankfully) gone, but that sure doesn’t stop Mother Nature.
Now, a Nor’easter storm has arrived, striking the Philadelphia-New Jersey region just eight days after one of the most destructive hurricanes in the country’s history. Unfortunately, many local residents and businesses have remained without power since the hurricane, and this new storm is bringing cold temperatures, along with rain and snow, depending on your location; thus, this wintry weather could cause more power outages and further damage, though we’re hoping that this is not the case.
In any event, APCON is gearing up for the start of snow plowing season. APCON has approximately 20 trucks available for snow plowing, including triaxle dump trucks that can be used for salting/sanding the roadways and parking lots. We also utilize snow blowers for clearing off parking lot sidewalks. And yes, the good old fashioned hand-held snow shovel or two could always make an appearance at one of our clearing locations if needed.
A gentle reminder to all property owners– in most cases, YOU are responsible for keeping your property clear of snow and ice (be sure to check your local laws). Please keep this in mind as snow piles up on your premises, so that no people or cars get damaged from snow not being plowed away or ice not being salted or sanded.
If you have any questions about snow removal for the Bucks County area, please feel free to contact us at 215-672-8000 and we would be happy to discuss them with you. We have worked with businesses ranging from corporate centers to hotels to shopping centers and more, as well as the public sector, to keep snow from hindering travels in the Bucks County region.
Our last APCON Blog post focused on an overview of ADA compliance for parking lots. Now, to continue this topic, we look into a few benefits of taking the steps to make your parking lot ADA compliant.
In recent years, more and more businesses have been increasing their investments in making sure their buildings and parking lots are ADA compliant. An example of this might be a store owner who has steps leading into his store’s entrance way, but wants to make his or her store more accessible for individuals in wheelchairs. The store owner thus decides to install a wheelchair ramp to allow individuals using wheelchairs, walkers, or crutches, to enter the store.
Despite the monetary cost of this type of project, there are many potential “hidden” benefits of making ADA compliant adjustments to your parking lot and entranceway, such as:
1. Increase Patronage
Keep in mind that by making your parking lot ADA compliant, you will be welcoming a broader range of customers or clients to your facilities. An additional benefit is that you will be creating a more conducive atmosphere for current and prospective employees to enter your building, thereby increasing the employment pool you can draw from.
2. Earn Tax Deductions
According to the ADA website, “the Internal Revenue Code allows a deduction of up to $15,000 per year for expenses associated with the removal of qualified architectural and transportation barriers (Section 190).” As always, check first with an accounting professional, but if you do qualify, this deduction will obviously help you reduce the cost of upgrading your lot to making it ADA compliant.
3. Gain Competitive Advantages
In addition to the above two benefits, consider that making your parking lot ADA compliant may give you a competitive advantage over another similar local business that does not have an ADA compliant parking area. If people have trouble accessing one store, they are much more likely to patronize the store that makes it easier for them to get around.
4. Boost Property Value
By making your parking lot and entranceway ADA compliant, you likely will be increasing the property value of your business, since any business that buys the property would not have to undertake the projects, but would still reap many of the benefits of being ADA complaint by buying your property.
5. Spread Civic Pride
While benefits such as tax deductions or property value increases are great for a business’ bottom line, sometimes just “doing the right thing” goes a long way in and of itself. Consider the difficulties that individuals with disabilities may face on a day to day basis; just by keeping them in mind as you make improvements to your parking lot will go a long way in making their lives easier. Having civic pride can have great ramifications for your business over the long run, as prospective customers feel better about doing business with you because you care about the community.
Last Word– “Is My Business Required to Remove Barriers?”
We will wrap this article up with the above question, which is posed on the ADA website. (Essentially, this is asking the question of whether or not you are required to make your parking lot ADA compliant, removing barriers in your parking lot is what ADA compliance is all about.) On that subject, here is what the ADA website says:
“If your business provides goods and services to the public, you are required to remove barriers if doing so is readily achievable. Such a business is called a public accommodation because it serves the public. If your business is not open to the public but is only a place of employment like a warehouse, manufacturing facility or office building, then there is no requirement to remove barriers. Such a facility is called a commercial facility. While the operator of a commercial facility is not required to remove barriers, you must comply with the ADA Standards for Accessible Design when you alter, renovate or expand your facility.”
This defnitions provides some leeway, but please be sure to check the ADA website for more information.
Lastly, we hope that this article is helpful to you as you make plans to upgrade your parking lot, and we would love to hear any feedback you may have. Thank you.
Associated Paving Contractors, based in Warminster, PA, serves the Philadelphia metro area and would be happy to talk to you about ADA compliance projects that you have in mind, such as wheelchair ramp installation, curb modifications, or handicap parking space upgrades. Please feel free to contact us at 215-672-8000 or firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss in more detail.
Perhaps your business or place of work has a parking lot connected to it. If so, you probably see it every day, but have you ever considered if the parking lot is ADA compliant?
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), originally signed into law in 1990 and later amended with changes in 2009, covers a vast range of guidelines that are put in place “to create civil rights law protections for people with disabilities that would be permanent, would not be able to be reversed or weakened, and would prohibit all discrimination,” according to Wikipedia.
As a whole, the ADA covers a broad gamut of topics, ranging from how wide a check out aisle should be to how seating should be arranged at entertainment venues to preventing discrimination on the job, and everything in between. In a nutshell, it’s a comprehensive, standarized way of ensuring that everybody can participate in public activities on a day to day basis, regardless of any disabilities. Think about it as a plan to eliminate obstacles for visitors at your business.
One part of this law that affects most businesses (particularly ones that are open to the public) is the ADA accessibility of a parking lot and building entrance. This law includes ramifications on such areas as:
- The number, size, and location of handicapped parking spaces
- The arrangement of loading/unloading zones in front of a building
- The posting of necessary signage
- The dimensions of curb ramps
- The specifications of a wheelchair ramp leading to the building’s entrance
- The removal of barriers in existing lots
When you’re looking to construct a new parking lot or refurbish an existing one, ensuring that your parking lot is ADA compliant can be a lot to consider as planning gets underway. Undoubtedly, you want to make sure it’s done right the first time so you won’t have to go back and make changes again.
(Though it may seem a bit daunting to ensure ADA compliance based on the extensive wording of the ADA law, there are several benefits for businessowners to keep in mind when undertaking parking lot construction or maintenance, in relation to making it ADA compliant. We will look at these benefits in a forthcoming blog post… stay tuned!)
That said, if you are in the process of constructing or maintaining a parking lot, and you need help with ADA compliance, please feel free to email us or call us at 215-672-8000 to discuss your plans. We are happy to assist you in getting the job done right. Associated Paving Contractors, Inc. (APCON) has extensive experience in constructing or refurbishing parking lots that are ADA compliant, and we work with you through the entire process.
We serve the Philadelphia metropolitan area including Bucks County, Montgomery County, Delaware County, and Chester County, as well as South Jersey and Central Jersey, and even farther regions as needed.
Thanks for reading, and, as always, drive safely!
As we always say here at APCON, your driveway and parking lot represent an important first impression of your business. And a not-so-subtle one at that.
When customers and visitors drive up to your building, does it look like you have rolled out the red carpet for them with a clean, safe, attractive pavement, or does it look like you don’t care about upkeep and instead leave potholes, cracks, and alligatored areas to fester?
Recently, Manufacturers’ Golf & Country Club in Fort Washington, PA contacted us because a large area of their driveway had developed problem spots that needed to be addressed. APCON was able to come in and re-pave this damaged section, restoring a beautiful look that is conducive to such an esteemed club, all while minimizing disruption to the Club’s traffic flow and pedestrian usage.
The project included an asphalt paving overlay and a new stormwater inlet, and we completed it all in a day. The Club was thrilled with the improvements and our quick turnaround time. We enjoyed the opportunity to handle this job and work at such a historic golf club in the Philadelphia area. And, undoubtedly, drivers will appreciate the smoothe pavement that greets them upon entering the club’s grounds.
To see some shots from after our work was completed, click on any of the thumbnails below to view larger images of the site.
If your parking lot or driveway has gone into disrepair, fear not, APCON can help! Associated Paving Contractors has expertise in doing the job right all while minizing disruption to your business. Please call us at 215-672-8000 or email us today to see how we might be able to improve your grounds efficiently and affordably.
In yesterday’s APCON blog post, we reviewed our recent paving work at Tj Smith’s in Warrington, whereby we added a new parking lot and crosswalk to connect with an existing lot at this bustling restaurant’s site.
As part of the work performed at this site, a row of arbor vitae trees needed to be removed in order to construct the new lot and also to not serve as a barrier between the two parking areas.
One option in dealing with these trees would have been to have the trees cut down and turned into mulch, which would have been a perfectly normal solution. However, we’re not your normal paving company!
Instead, we decided to remove the trees and transplant them at our equipment yard approximately five miles away from the restaurant. The idea was that these trees would provide some shade, natural beauty, and privacy, along with the added bonus of keeping these lush trees from being destroyed.
Well– the outcome of the story has been overwhelmingly successful thus far: After more than a month, the trees seem to have transported rather well and all of them seem to be readjusting to their new location nicely, although some branches were lost during the transition process, but we anticipate some of these thinned areas will grow back eventually.
The accompanying photo shows some of the newly planted trees as they look today. Our green thumbs seem to be working well so far!
This past spring, Associated Paving Contractors served up a new parking lot for a popular local restaurant. And the results were… dare we say… tasty?
Tj Smith’s, located at 1585 Easton Rd. in Warrington, is a bustling dining establishment which has seen its business expand over the past few years, to the point that it was growing out of its old parking lot. The original lot featured approximately 60 spaces, but on a busy weekend night diners would have to get creative in finding a spot since the restaurant got so busy (a good problem to have!).
To alleviate this challenge, Tj Smith’s hired APCON to cook up a “menu” of projects in order to expand their parking, including:
- Appetizer: Remove a border of tall privacy trees that separated one side of the lot from a patch of grass adjacent to it
- Main Course: Add in a new parking lot with 24 additional parking spots where the former patch of grass sat
- Dessert: Connect the two lots with a StreetPrint walkway to add a touch of class between the two lots
The job has since been completed and the results have been positive, as customers and employees have a safe place to park and the site is very attractive.
Please take a look at our slideshow below, featuring a few pics from before, during, and after the work was performed. (Click on the thumbnails for larger images.)
If you’re in the Warrington area, be sure to check out the new parking lot at Tj Smith’s… and of course stop in for a bite to eat… you won’t leave hungry!