MSA has been working with Wisconsin municipalities to assess ADA compliance since the original adoption of ADA in 1991. In 2019, the City of Janesville, Wisconsin, asked MSA to assist with an ADA audit of their public right of ways to assess compliance and help prepare a Right-of-Way Transition Plan for the community.
The City’s goal was to assess conditions at 3,200 public intersections and 340 miles of municipal roadway, including city curb ramps, sidewalks, transit stops, crossings, traffic signals, off-street sidewalks and trails. The project scope included the development of a procedure, tools, and documentation for a full self-evaluation of ADA compliance within the City’s right of way.
The evaluation focused on “Pedestrian Access Routes” within exterior facilities owned and contained with the right-of-way of the City of Janesville. Audits would be conducted by City staff with technical assistance by MSA, and results summarized and implemented into a Transition Plan, as required by ADA Title II.
As Janesville was interested in being an active part of the auditing process, the MSA GIS team configured a custom ArcGIS Collector App to be used in the self-auditing process. The app features a dashboard catered to collect and display information about the specific items Janesville wanted to target in their audit.
Data and photos collected via the app in the field are immediately uploaded to the dashboard and marked for compliancy or non-compliancy. Further, each project is able to be ranked and classified in tiers to help with prioritization: tier one equals largely or fully compliant; tier two, substantially compliant; tier three, several elements non-compliant; and so on. All data collected in the field is organized in this database, a “living” map that can be edited over time to track real-time progress of evaluations, upgrades, needs and dates of completion. Locations of PROWAG non-compliance or areas needing attention can be recorded as precise GPS pinpoints, and pull-down menus on the app provide the user with PROWAG compliance standards to assess during evaluation.
Following the self-assessment and audit, MSA worked with City staff to develop an ADA Right-of-Way Transition Plan that complies with PROWAG, ADA Title II and State of Wisconsin standards. It includes the self-evaluation results; estimated schedule and budget need for improvements; a record of public outreach; grievance procedures; contact information; agency ADA design standards and procedures; and glossary of terms.
The project was funded by the Janesville Metropolitan Planning Organization and based on guidance from the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration. The City is now confident that they are properly addressing all compliance needs and looks forward to continuing to foster an open, accessible way of life in Janesville for generations to come.