SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT

BETWEEN

THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

AND

THE CITY OF NORFOLK, VIRGINIA

 

DJ 204-79-129

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Background

1. This matter was initiated by a complaint filed under title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12131-12134, with the United States Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Disability Rights Section (Department), against the City of Norfolk, Virginia (City). The complaint alleges that the SCOPE Arena is inaccessible to persons with disabilities.

2. The Department of Justice is authorized under 28 C.F.R. Part 35, Subpart F, to investigate fully the allegations of the complaint in this matter to determine the compliance of the City with title II of the ADA and the Department's implementing regulation, issue findings, and, where appropriate, negotiate and secure voluntary compliance agreements. Furthermore, the Attorney General is authorized under 42 U.S.C. § 12133 to bring a civil action enforcing title II of the ADA should the Department of Justice fail to secure voluntary compliance. In consideration of the terms of this Agreement, the Attorney General agrees to refrain from undertaking further investigation or from filing civil suit in this matter.

3. The parties to this Agreement are the United States of America and the City. In order to avoid the burdens and expenses of further investigation and possible litigation, the parties hereby agree as follows:

 

Facts

4. The City owns and operates a stadium, commonly known as the SCOPE Arena, located in the City of Norfolk, Virginia. Construction of the SCOPE Arena was completed before the effective date of the ADA.

5. Because of architectural barriers and discriminatory policies, the SCOPE Arena is not readily accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities.

Jurisdiction

6. Title II of the ADA applies to the City because it is a public entity as defined in 42 U.S.C. § 12131.

7. Title II of the ADA prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities on the basis of disability in the services, programs, or activities of a public entity such as the City. 28 C.F.R. § 35.130.

8. Under the ADA, the services, programs, and activities provided in the SCOPE Arena, when viewed in their entirety, must be accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities. 28 C.F.R. § 35.150.

Remedial Action

9. The City will complete the following alterations to the SCOPE Arena within two months from the effective date of this Agreement.

a. Accessible seating will be modified so as to provide 92 accessible wheelchair spaces and 80 companion seats in row L of the arena.

b. Accessible parking spaces will be altered as follows:

i. The accessible spaces along the first aisle wall will be modified so that access aisles at least 60 inches wide are provided. Five accessible spaces will be provided in this area. Standards §§ 4.1.2(5), 4.6.3, 4.6.6.

ii. Signage designating the accessible spaces along the first aisle wall will be raised so as to be visible when a vehicle is parked in each space. Standards §§ 4.1.2(7)(a), 4.6.4.

iii. The accessible spaces along the wall behind Chrysler Hall will be modified so that access aisles at least 60 inches wide are provided. Standards §§ 4.1.2(5), 4.6.3, 4.6.6.

iv. The accessible spaces in front of the box office will be modified so that access aisles at least 60 inches wide are provided. Eight accessible spaces will be provided in this area. Standards §§ 4.1.2(5), 4.6.3, 4.6.6

v. Signage designating the accessible spaces in front of the box office will be permanently mounted and will be raised so as to be visible when a vehicle is parked in each space. Standards §§ 4.1.2(7)(a), 4.6.4.

vi. The van accessible spaces near Chrysler Hall will be modified so that the access aisles serving each space are at least 96 inches wide. Standards §§ 4.1.2(5)(b), 4.6.3.

c. The floor surface of the exterior route leading to the advance sales offices will be modified so as to be slip-resistant. Standards §§ 4.1.2(1), 4.3.6, 4.5.1.

d. At least one of the sales ticket counters located near the underground parking lot will be modified so as to have a portion of the counter which is at least 36 inches in length with a maximum height of 36 inches above the floor. This ticket counter will prominently display the international symbol of accessibility and will be open whenever any ticket counters at this location are open. Standards § 7.2(2).

e. At least one of the ticket counters located near the entrance leading from the outside directly to the Plaza level will be modified so as to have a portion of the counter which is at least 36 inches in length with a maximum height of 36 inches above the floor. This ticket counter will prominently display the international symbol of accessibility and will be open whenever any ticket counters at this location are open. Standards § 7.2(2).

f. Along both sides of the slopes at each of the four routes leading from the street sidewalk directly to the Plaza Level handrails will be provided that extend at least 12 inches beyond the top and bottom of the ramp segment and that are parallel with the floor surface. Standards §§ 4.1.2(1), 4.5.2, 4.8.5.

g. At each of the two sets of stairs serving the upper level concourse, a barrier will be provided under the stairs on the main concourse level to warn persons with vision impairments of the overhead hazard. Standards §§ 4.1.3(2), 4.3.5, 4.4.2.

h. Public toilet rooms located on the lower level will be altered as follows:

i. In both toilet rooms, the designated accessible stalls will be altered so as to be at least 60 inches wide. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.17.3.

ii. In both toilet rooms, the toilet paper dispensers in the designated accessible stalls will be moved so as to be mounted below the side grab bar at least 19 inches from the floor. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.16.6.

iii. In both toilet rooms, the toilets in the designated accessible stalls will be altered so that the toilet seat is mounted between 17 inches and 19 inches from the floor. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.16.3, 4.17.3.

iv. In both toilet rooms, the grab bars in the designated accessible stalls will be modified so that the grab bars attached to the rear wall are at least 36 inches long and so that there is 1_ inches of space between each grab bar and the wall. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.17.6, 4.26.2.

v. In the men's toilet room, the grab bars in the designated accessible stall will be moved so as to be mounted between 33 inches and 36 inches from the floor. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.17.6.

vi. In both toilet rooms, a stall will be provided that is 36 inches wide with an outward swinging, self-closing door and parallel grab bars. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.17.3, 4.22.4.

vii. A visual alarm will be provided in both toilet rooms. Standards §§ 4.1.3(14), 4.28.1, 4.28.3

i. Public toilet rooms located on the Plaza level will be altered as follows:

i. In both toilet rooms, the designated accessible stall will be modified so as to be at least 60 inches wide. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.17.3

ii. In both toilet rooms, the flush controls of the water closets in the designated accessible stalls will be mounted on the wide side of the toilet area. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.16.5, 4.17.2.

iii. In both toilet rooms, the grab bars in the designated accessible stalls will be modified so that there is 1_ inches of space between each grab bar and the wall. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.17.6, 4.26.2.

iv. In both toilet rooms, a stall will be provided that is 36 inches wide with an outward swinging, self-closing door and parallel grab bars. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.17.3, 4.22.4.

v. In the men's toilet room, a urinal will be provided that has an elongated rim and is mounted no more than 17 inches above the floor. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.18.2, 4.22.5.

vi. In both toilet rooms, the mirror will be moved so that the bottom edge of the reflecting surface is no more than 40 inches above the floor. Standards §§ 4.1.3(11), 4.19.6, 4.22.6.

vii. A visual alarm will be provided in both toilet rooms. Standards §§ 4.1.3(14), 4.28.1, 4.28.3.

10. When floor seating is utilized for an event at the arena, at least one percent of the number of seats available on the floor will be accessible to persons using wheelchairs and will be sold as accessible seating as outlined in paragraph 11. Standards § 4.1.3(19)(a).

11. Ticketing and other policies for the arena will be modified as follows:

a. The arena calendar of events and event brochures will advise patrons of the availability of accessible seats and companion seats.

b. The arena program and seating chart will provide information about the availability of accessible seats and companion seats.

c. Tickets for accessible seats and companion seats will be available from Ticketmaster, by mail, and at ticket windows in the same manner that tickets are available for other seats at the arena.

d. Accessible floor seats will not be made available to patrons who do not request accessible seats until all non-accessible seating is sold out or until 5:00 p.m. the day before the event, whichever is sooner.

e. Designated wheelchair seating and companion seating in row L will not be made available to patrons who do not request accessible or companion seats until all non-accessible seats (except those in row K) are sold out or until 5:00 p.m. the day before the event, whichever is sooner.

f. Row K will be designated as companion seating, and seats in row K will not be sold for any other purpose until all other seats are sold out.

12. The City will notify the Department when all remedial action outlined in paragraph 9 has been completed.

Implementation and Enforcement of the Agreement

12. If at any time the City desires to modify any portion of this Agreement because of changed conditions making performance impossible or impractical or for any other reason, it shall promptly notify the Department in writing, setting forth the facts and circumstances thought to justify modification and the substance of the proposed modification. Until there is written agreement by the Department to the proposed modification, the proposed modification shall not take effect. Such agreement shall not unreasonably be withheld.

13. Failure by the Department of Justice to enforce this entire Agreement or any provision thereof with respect to any deadline or any other provision herein shall not be construed as a waiver of the Department of Justice's right to enforce other deadlines and provisions of this Agreement.

14. The Department of Justice may review compliance with this Agreement at any time. If the Department of Justice believes that this Agreement or any requirement thereof has been violated, it may institute a civil action seeking specific performance of the provisions of this Agreement or enforcement of the requirements of title II of the ADA in Federal district court following written notice to the City of the possible violation and a period of ten (10) days in which the City has the opportunity to cure the alleged violation.

15. This agreement is a public document. A copy of this document or any information contained in it may be made available to any person by the City or the Department on request.

16. The effective date of this Agreement is the date of the last signature below. The term of this Agreement is two years from the effective date.

17. This Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between the parties on the matters raised herein, and no other statement, promise, or agreement, either written or oral, made by either party or agents of either party, that is not contained in this written agreement, shall be enforceable.

18. This Agreement does not purport to remedy any other potential violations of the ADA or any other Federal law. This Agreement does not affect the City's continuing responsibility to comply with all aspects of the ADA.

19. The signer of this document for the City represents that he or she is authorized to bind the City to this Agreement.

 

For the United States:


Isabelle Katz Pinzler
Acting Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights

By: ______________________________ Date: ________________________

John L. Wodatch
Allison Nichol
Naomi Milton
Civil Rights Division
U.S. Department of Justice
P.O. Box 66738
Washington, D.C. 20035-6738
(202) 514-3882

 

For the City:

 

By: ______________________________ Date: ________________________

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