Take a look at the ransacked look of Shakou’s outdoor dining area. A cluttered mess of outdoor furniture at Shakou restaurant, 70 North Vail Avenue in Arlington Heights, blocks the north side of the plaza from pedestrian traffic, and especially blocks pedestrians that are senior citizens and people with disabilities.
When Shakou blocks the north side of the plaza with their outdoor furniture, pedestrians that want to walk to enter Berry Yo from the north must walk an extra 90 feet — often in the pouring rain. Yesterday an elderly resident who arrived to park in front of Berry Yo decided against getting a yogurt serving. Despite having a great parking space, the elderly Arlington Heights resident saw that Shakou had blocked the north side of the plaza with a clutter of outdoor furniture. With pouring rain and the extra walk — 40 feet south along a planter and then a 50-foot backtrack — it was too much of an effort for the senior citizen.
Americans with Disabilities Act Penalties
First fine under title III is $75,000; subsequent violations are $150,000.
Apparently complaints have been called in to the Village of Arlington Heights about the blocked passage of the plaza, but the Village of Arlington Heights has done nothing.
Not only is the clutter an inconvenience, but the blocked passage is a serious life safety hazard. If an errant car or truck breached the curb into the plaza or sidewalk — and worst-case scenario broke gas lines feeding the outdoor heaters at Shakou — pedestrians and Shakou diners could be seriously injured, burned or killed because their escape from the sidewalk or plaza was obstructed.
Arlington Heights, like most communities, has strict laws that assure that exits in buildings have safe access and aren’t blocked. How does it happen that the Village of Arlington Heights has no common sense to protect pedestrians in an outdoor plaza in the same manner?
Arlington Heights, like most communities, also complies with Americans with Disablities Act law regarding access for people with disabilities at public buildings. How have they missed the common sense to facilitate access for people with disabilities at this outdoor plaza?
DO THIS TODAY …
1) Call the Village of Arlington Heights and report your complaint: 847-368-5000
2) Then call Shakou and tell them you’re not dining at their restaurant until they clean their outdoor furniture mess: 847-749-3915
^^ MOBILE? USE VOICE MIC ^^
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ADA INFO …
The ADA Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG) covers accessible routes, protruding objects, and curb ramps. The nearest curb ramp by Shakou is at the southwest corner of Vail Avenue and Wing Street. The ADAAG also covers entrances, ground and floor surfaces and space allowance and reach ranges.
The ADA states that a “covered entity” shall not discriminate against “a qualified individual with a disability. Under Title III of the ADA, all new construction (construction, modification or alterations) after the effective date of the ADA (approximately July 1992) must be fully compliant with the Americans With Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines.
Title III also has application to existing facilities. One of the definitions of “discrimination” under Title III of the ADA is a “failure to remove” architectural barriers in existing facilities. This means that even facilities that have not been modified or altered in any way after the ADA was passed still have obligations. The standard is whether “removing barriers” (typically defined as bringing a condition into compliance with the ADAAG) is “readily achievable”, defined as “…easily accomplished without much difficulty or expense”. Moving outdoor furniture would be easily accomplished.
ADA disabilities include both mental and physical medical conditions. A condition does not need to be severe or permanent to be a disability. You can qualify if you are temporarily confined to a wheelchair because of a mobility problem.
On March 28, 2014, the Department of Justice issued a Final Rule that adjusts for inflation the civil monetary penalties assessed or enforced by the Civil Rights Division, including civil penalties available under title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). For the ADA, this adjustment increased the maximum civil penalty for a first violation under title III from $55,000 to $75,000; for a subsequent violation the new maximum is $150,000. The new maximums apply only to violations occurring on or after April 28, 2014.
Red Marker at Obstructions …