Future Construction, New Construction, and Alterations
9. The University shall ensure that any of its facilities that are designed and constructed for first occupancy after September 1, 2006 (“future construction”), are designed and constructed in compliance with the new construction provisions of the ADA and its implementing regulation, 28 C.F.R. Pt. 36 and App. A.
10. The University shall ensure that its facilities that were constructed for first occupancy after January 26, 1993, but before September 1, 2006 ("new construction"), comply with the new construction provisions of the ADA and its implementing regulation, 28 C.F.R. Pt. 36 App. A, by no later than February 1, 2010, consistent with the provisions of paragraphs 18 through 29.
11. The University shall ensure that any alterations made after the effective date of this Agreement to any of its facilities are, to the maximum extent feasible, readily accessible to, and usable by, individuals with disabilities, in compliance with 42 U.S.C. § 12183 (a)(2), 28 C.F.R. §§ 36.402 - 36.405. The University shall ensure that any specific alterations required by this Agreement are, to the maximum extent feasible, readily accessible to, and usable by, individuals with disabilities, in compliance with 42 U.S.C. § 12183 (a)(2), 28 C.F.R. §§ 36.402 - 36.405, except where, on a case-by-case basis, the parties may agree to a different standard in the Physical Access Plan.
12. The University shall update its efforts continually to ensure full access to services to individuals with disabilities and to continue its ongoing efforts to remove barriers to access throughout its campus. 42 U.S.C. § 12182(b)(2)(A)(ii) and (iv).
13. The University shall maintain in operable working condition those features of facilities and equipment that are required to be accessible by persons with disabilities by the ADA, its implementing regulation, or this Agreement (including as provided in the Physical Access Plan).
ADA Compliance Officers and Architectural Firm
14. At the request of the United States, the University has designated an ADA Compliance Officer who has the authority and responsibility for ensuring that all aspects of the University campus meet the terms of this Agreement and the requirements of the ADA. The position of Compliance Officer will be maintained for the duration of this Agreement.
15. At the request of the United States, the University has selected two employees to assist the Compliance Officer in fulfilling the obligations of this Agreement. The Compliance Officer - along with these two employees - will have completed training on the ADA’s accessibility requirements by no later than August 1, 2006. The training shall be of sufficient quality and duration to enable these individuals to become proficient in understanding the applicable accessibility requirements of title III of the ADA, including the Standards of Accessible Design.
16. At the request of, and with the approval of the United States, the University has contracted with an architectural firm that employs individuals who are trained in and knowledgeable about the ADA, to assist the University in complying with this Agreement. The University shall, with the assistance of that firm, survey and evaluate those aspects of the University campus required to be surveyed by this Agreement and produce the reports required by this Agreement. The University shall also seek the firm’s suggestions for potential improvements to the University’s emergency evacuation plan, and shall seek its assistance in closely monitoring the work of private contractors hired to execute accessibility work required by this Agreement.
Ensuring Access to Facilities and Services: General
17. As further described in paragraphs 18 through 29 below, the University shall develop a multi-phase comprehensive plan to improve access to individuals with disabilities (the “Physical Access Plan” or “Plan”). As a basis for the Plan, the University shall first develop a Facility Assessment Matrix (“the Matrix”), which will include a methodology for categorizing and surveying campus facilities. The Plan will establish specific actions, timetables, and construction completion dates for University facilities, as detailed in this Agreement. The University shall also, consistent with the provisions of paragraph 30, relocate programs, services, and amenities to accessible locations where necessary for compliance with the Agreement. The University of Chicago hospitals are not within the scope of the United States’ compliance review or this Agreement.
Ensuring Access to Facilities and Services: The Matrix and Physical Access Plan
18. By August 1, 2006, the University, in conjunction with its consultant, shall prepare a Facility Assessment Matrix (“the Matrix”). In the Matrix, the University shall identify and select a preliminary classification for its facilities or portions thereof that are part of the University’s campus. This classification will determine the criteria by which the University will survey each facility so identified, and will inform its decisions with respect to specific alterations, if any, to be undertaken for that facility pursuant to the Physical Access Plan.
19. The University shall include in the Matrix a complete list of all campus facilities, and the University’s preliminary classification of each facility (or portion(s) thereof) into one of four categories:
(a) those facilities designed for first occupancy after January 26, 1993, but before September 1, 2006 ("new construction");
(b) those facilities, other than those covered by paragraph 19 (a), in which the University offers programs, services, or amenities that are open to the University community, without advanced notice or registration (“open-use facilities”);
(c) those facilities, other than those covered by paragraph 19 (a), in which the University offers programs, services, or amenities that are open to the University community, but only with advanced notice or registration (“limited-use facilities”); and
(d) existing facilities that the University proposes to exclude from the Physical Access Plan because of the cost and/or difficulty of providing accessibility, or for any other reasons. The parties agree that category (d) includes, but is not limited to: University physical plant facilities, and University facilities used solely for storage.
20. By March 1, 2007, the University shall survey all facilities identified in the first three categories of the Matrix, and produce written reports to the United States documenting those surveys, in accordance with their designation, as follows:
(a) for new construction, as defined in subparagraph 19(a), the University shall survey facilities in their entirety in order to identify every deviation from the new construction requirements of the ADA, including the Standards, 28 C.F.R. Pt. 36, App. A;
(b) for existing open use facilities or portions thereof, as defined in subparagraph 19(b), the University shall survey facilities in order to determine whether they have the following accessible features, meeting the technical provisions of the Standards (28 C.F.R. Part 36, App. A. §§ 4.3 - 4.35, and 5-9):
i. Accessible parking where parking facilities are provided by the University;
ii. Accessible approaches from adjacent parking areas, walkways, and public transportation drop-off points; iii. An accessible entrance to the building, and into all rooms or spaces where such programs, services, or amenities are provided;
iv. An accessible water fountain (if a water fountain is provided) on an accessible level;
v. Accessible men’s and women’s toilet rooms, or a unisex accessible toilet room on an accessible level;
vi. Accessible public telephones (if public telephones are offered) on an accessible level;
vii. Signage with raised and Braille characters, as well as directional signage, as required by the Standards;
viii. Accessible elevators or lifts if any program, service, or amenity offered is located above or below the accessible first floor; ix. Accessible seating in classrooms or auditoriums or other spaces that meets the appropriate ADA Standards; and
x. Accessible routes from the accessible entrance to each accessible space.
(c) for existing limited use facilities or portions thereof, as defined in subparagraph 19(c), the University shall in its discretion have the option of:
(i) surveying each facility in order to determine whether there is or could be an accessible entrance on an accessible route from parking and other approach points, as well as surveying the first level and any level(s) served by an elevator of each facility consistent with the criteria of subparagraph (b) of this paragraph; or,
(ii) on a case by case basis, for a limited number of facilities, consistent with paragraph 30, ensuring that programs, services, and amenities located in a limited use facility be relocated to an accessible building that meets or exceeds the criteria of subparagraph 20(b) in the event that a person with a disability who needs a level of accessibility that is not otherwise provided registers or gives notice consistent with any advance registration requirements.
(d) for exterior circulation routes on campus, the University shall survey in order to determine any deviations from sections 4.1.2(1) through (5) of the Standards, 28 C.F.R. Part 36, App. A.
21. Between April 15 and May 15, 2007, the United States and the University will meet and discuss the reports and the status of the Matrix. By September 1, 2007, the University shall complete the process of developing preliminary cost estimates for remedial work consistent with the written reports. The United States and the University anticipate that the University will change the characterization of and/or the intended future use of certain buildings and modify its Matrix accordingly. The University shall provide the United States with a copy of the final Matrix by no later than September 1, 2007.
22. By no later than October 1, 2007, the University shall develop a draft comprehensive Physical Access Plan based upon the Matrix, the written reports, and the cost estimates obtained by the University, that shall set forth the following:
(a) a program for modifying or altering facilities and exterior circulation routes, so that, by February 1, 2010:
(i) all new construction is brought into compliance with the new construction Standards, 28 C.F.R. Part 36, App. A.
(ii) all open- use facilities, or portions thereof, as defined in subparagraph 19(b), meet the criteria of subparagraph 20(b);
(iii) limited-use facilities, or portions thereof, as defined in subparagraph 19(c), either: comply with the criteria of subparagraph 20(b); or comply with the provisions of paragraph 30.
(iv) exterior circulation routes comply to the maximum extent feasible with sections 4.1.2(1) through (5) of the Standards, 28 C.F.R. Part 36, App. A;
(v) three percent of units in its housing facilities (and the bathrooms serving those units) are accessible to individuals with disabilities, with those units to be dispersed among the different facilities on campus in a manner to be negotiated by the parties in the Physical Access Plan; and,
(vi) a reasonable number of housing facilities, in addition to those modified pursuant to subparagraph 22(a)(v), will have an accessible entrance, a first-floor common area (if one is provided), and a toilet room (if one is provided) which may be used by a visitor with a disability.
(b) a program for ensuring that adequate systems are in place to maintain accessible features.
23. On or before October 1, 2007, the University shall (via Intranet, hard copy, or any other appropriate means) make its draft Physical Access Plan available to students, faculty, and employees of the University and will actively seek comments and suggestions to improve its proposed Physical Access Plan. The University shall make the Physical Access Plan available for comment for a minimum of three weeks during a time that the University is in session. The University shall accept written comments in any form (including but not limited to e-mails), maintain copies of all comments, and provide copies to the United States within 30 days of a request.
24. By no later than November 8, 2007, after it has considered the comments of the University community, the University shall submit its proposed Physical Access Plan to the United States in both hard copy and on computer disk.
25. By no later than December 18, 2007, the United States shall provide the University with a response to its proposed Physical Access Plan.
26. By no later than February 1, 2008, the University shall provide the United States an amended Physical Access Plan that incorporates the comments of the United States.
27. By March 1, 2008, the University shall move forward toward the implementation of the Physical Access Plan (or those aspects of the Physical Access Plan to which the parties have agreed), including that the University shall arrange for its Board of Trustees to meet and vote on the Plan as soon thereafter as practicable, but no later than April 15, 2008. Once the Board of Trustees has approved the comprehensive Physical Access Plan and incorporated the Plan into the University Capital Operating Budget, the University will immediately commence construction and renovation projects in accordance with the schedules and timetables set forth in the Plan. If the Board of Trustees fails to approve the Plan or any part thereof, then the Parties will resort to mediation sharing equally in the cost.
28. By March 1, 2008, if the United States and the University have been unable to reach an agreement on all aspects of the Plan, the parties shall resort to mediation with respect to any remaining issues, and the parties shall share equally the cost of mediation. If, by July 1, 2008, the parties have been unable to resolve all remaining issues through mediation and negotiation, then the provisions of paragraph 40 shall apply as if the United States had provided the 60 days notice required by that paragraph.
29. If during the implementation of the Plan, the University determines that, due to reasons beyond its control (e.g. contractor delay, severe weather delays, etc.), it cannot comply with certain, limited aspects of the Plan by the dates set forth in the Plan, the University may seek a reasonable extension of time to complete the work, and the United States will not unreasonably withhold its consent.
Ensuring Physical Access to Facilities and Services: Relocation
30. By no later than February 1, 2010, the University shall ensure that programs, services, and amenities that require advanced notice or registration shall be located in (or relocated to) an accessible building that meets or exceeds the criteria of subparagraph 20(b), in the event that a person with a disability who needs a level of accessibility that is not otherwise provided, registers or gives notice consistent with any advance registration requirements.
31. By no later than April 1, 2007, the University shall review and update its campus-wide emergency evacuation, sheltering, and shelter-in-place plans for individuals with disabilities based upon the evaluation of these plans contained in its consultants’ reports. Also by that date, an updated, proposed emergency plan shall be submitted to the United States for comment and made readily available to students, faculty, and employees of the University for review and comment. The United States will comment upon the plans by May 1, 2007, and the University shall make reasonable, appropriate changes based upon the comments of the United States, and public comments by June 1, 2007. The University shall make its final emergency plans available on the University’s intranet and website, as well as in printed form, and will update them as necessary.
32. The University shall ensure that, by no later than October 1, 2006, and at all times during the effective dates of this agreement, its fixed-route and demand responsive transportation systems are in compliance with the provisions of 42 U.S.C. §§ 12182 (b)(2)(B) and (c), and specifically with the requirements of this paragraph.
a. Through a contractor, the University operates a fixed-route campus-wide bus system. The buses used for the evening route are lift-equipped and seat 37 passengers, including a location for one person in a wheelchair. If the University or its contractor already has purchased or leased, or purchases or leases during the effective dates of this agreement, any vehicle for use on this fixed-route system, the University shall ensure that:
i. any vehicle with a seating capacity in excess of 16 passengers (including the driver), for which the solicitation was made after August 25, 1992, is accessible to individuals with disabilities.
ii. any vehicle with a seating capacity of 16 passengers or less (including the driver), for which the solicitation was made after August 25, 1992, is accessible to individuals with disabilities unless the system ensures a level of service to individuals with disabilities, including individuals who use wheelchairs, equivalent to the level of service provided to individuals without disabilities. See 49 C.F.R. §§ 37.101, 37.105.
b. Through a contractor, the University also operates a separate fixed route bus line for students living in two off-campus dormitories. The provisions of paragraph 32(a) shall also apply to this system.
c. During the academic year the University operates a demand-responsive system, the Late Night Van Service. Because each of the vehicles currently in the fleet has a seating capacity of less than 16 passengers, the University shall ensure that, as of September 1, 2006, it operates this system so that, when viewed in its entirety, the Late Night Van Service provides a level of service to individuals with disabilities, including individuals who use wheelchairs, equivalent to the level of service provided to individuals without disabilities, with respect to the service characteristics set forth in 49 C.F.R. § 37.105. See 49 C.F.R. § 37.101(d).
d. The University shall ensure that adequate systems are in place to maintain accessible features on transportation vehicles including, but not limited to, lifts and other means of access to vehicles. See 49 C.F.R. § 37.161.
33. By October 1, 2007, the University shall send a letter to the City of Chicago requesting that the City modify (or locate) curb ramps or other sloped areas where campus circulation routes cross curbs on public rights of way, so that those circulation routes are accessible to individuals with disabilities. See ADA Technical Assistance Manual § III - 7.4200, 28 C.F.R. § 35.150 (d)(2).
Accessibility Information and Signage
34. By no later than March 1, 2007, the University shall display on its website information to assist individuals with disabilities to identify, among other things: accessible routes through the University campus, accessible parking areas, accessible entrances to buildings, and accessible spaces within buildings. The University’s website shall also be updated regularly to reflect newly added or renovated accessible features of the campus.
35. By no later than October 1, 2006, at facility entrances and toilet rooms, where not all entrances or toilet rooms at the facility are accessible, the University shall install the International Symbol of Accessibility and signage complying with the applicable requirements of section 4.1.2(7) of the Standards at the accessible entrances and toilet rooms, as well as directional signage complying with section 4.1.2(7) of the Standards at the inaccessible entrances and toilet rooms which indicates the location of the nearest accessible entrance or toilet room.
Assistive Listening Systems
36. By March 1, 2007, the University shall have assistive listening devices (ALD’s) available for at least 2% of the total number of seats in each lecture hall, meeting room, and other assembly areas covered by section 4.1.3 (19)(b) of the Standards, if they (1) accommodate at least 50 persons or have audio amplification systems and (2) have fixed seating. For other assembly areas, the University shall provide a permanently installed assistive listening system or an adequate number of outlets or other necessary wiring for a portable assistive listening system in accordance with section 4.1.3(19)(b) of the Standards. The University shall have a procedure for ensuring that those who need ALD’s can obtain them at the time needed.
37. At any time during the effective dates of this agreement, the United States reserves the
right, with prior, reasonable notice, to inspect the University’s campus, to request access
to records, and to request documentation of compliance with this agreement.
38. At six-month intervals beginning in 2008 (on July 1 and December 1 of each year), the University shall provide the United States with a detailed written report that demonstrates compliance with the Physical Access Plan and which (a) identifies and describes each construction project that has commenced, or for which plans have been developed, during the preceding six months; and (b) documents (including digital photographs) the completion of any alteration work done pursuant to this Agreement. By July 1 of each year the University shall provide the United States with an annual report, which shall identify and describe all financial allocations for the upcoming fiscal year that are directed to improving access on the University’s campus.
39. The University shall maintain the written evaluations and reports required by this Agreement for the duration of this Agreement. Within 30 days of a request by the United States, the University shall provide copies of any report(s) (excluding material subject to attorney-client privilege, discussion drafts, and attorney work product) to the United States.
40. If, at any time, based upon reports, inspection or other information, the United States finds that the University has failed to comply with this Agreement, the United States agrees to notify the University in writing of the alleged noncompliance and attempt to seek a resolution of the matter with the University. If the parties are unable to reach a resolution within 60 days of the date of the United States’ written notification, the United States may seek enforcement of the terms of this Agreement in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. In the event that the court determines that the University has failed to comply with any term in this Agreement, such failure to comply shall be treated as a violation of title III of the ADA and the United States may seek, and the court may assess, civil penalties as provided in 42 U.S.C. § 12188 (b)(2)(c). Alternatively, should the parties be unable to reach a resolution within 60 days of the date of the United States’ written notification, the United States may bring an action to enforce compliance with the ADA and its implementing regulation.
41. This Agreement constitutes the entire agreement between the parties relating to the Department’s title III compliance review referenced in paragraph 1 above, and Department of Justice Matter Number 202-23-126, and no other statement, promise, or agreement, either written or oral, made by any party or agents or any party that is not contained in this written Agreement, including its attachments, shall be enforceable. 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 University’s continuing responsibility to comply with all aspects of the ADA.
42. Failure by the United States to enforce this entire Agreement, or any provision thereof with regard to any deadline or any other provision herein, shall not be construed as a waiver of the United States’ right to enforce other deadlines and provisions of this Agreement.
43. If any term of this Settlement Agreement is determined by any court to be unenforceable, the other terms of this Agreement shall nonetheless remain in full force and effect, provided, however, that if the severance of any such provision materially alters the rights or obligations of the parties, the Department of Justice and the University shall engage in good faith negotiations in order to adopt amendments to this Agreement as may be necessary to restore the parties as closely as possible to the initially agreed upon relative rights and obligations.
44. This Agreement shall be binding on the University, its agents, its employees, and any successors or assigns. In the event that the University seeks to transfer or assign any campus facility owned by it as of the date of this Agreement, and the successor or assign intends on carrying on the same or similar use of the facility, as a condition of sale, the University shall obtain the written accession of the successor or assign to any obligations remaining under this Agreement for the remaining term of this Agreement.
45. This Agreement is effective as of the date of the last signature below until July 1, 2010, unless extended by agreement of the parties through an amendment to this Agreement.