how many Handicap Spaces does my parking lot need?

We are frequently asked “how many Handicap Spaces does my parking lot need?”

All parking lots for customers, visitors or businesses with the exception of valet parking; should have handicap accessible spaces for vehicles and should be marked properly.

When a business, state, local agency or other covered entity restripes its lots it must provide accessible parking spaces per ADA requirements. Businesses or privately owned facilities that provide services or products to the public should have their parking lot striped per ADA requirements.Meaning they must have a specified number of handicap spaces.

A handicap space should be in a location which is the shortest, safest route to travel to a handicap accessible entrance to a building. Sidewalks at these locations should have curb cuts for accessibility. If there are multiple accessible handicap entrances with adjacent parking, the handicap spaces should be divided up, and located closest to the accessible handicap entrances.

An accessible route to the accessible entrance  must always be provided. The accessible routes should not have a slope greater than 1:12 in the direction of travel. No curbs or stairs should be in the way of the travel route and the route should be at least 3 feet wide. The handicap spaces should be in clusters. The clusters maybe in more than one location.

A normal handicap space is 8 feet wide with a 5 foot hashed off area or a total of 13 feet. The hashed off areas can be shared by two handicap spaces. The slope in the access isle or hashed area is 1:50 maximum slop in all directions. A van accessible space is 16 feet, it is a 8 foot parking space with an 8 foot (96 inches) hashed off areas. Again, two handicap spaces can share the one hashed off area. The wider hashed off area is to accommodate the wheelchair lift.


Each spot should also have a sign with the handicap accessible logo. If it is a van spot it should be labeled van accessible. The height of the sign should be between 5 and 8 feet to the top of the sign.

Below is a list of numbered handicap spaces needed for parking lots. Each parking lot should have a minimum of 1 van handicap accessible parking space.

list of # spaces needed for ada comp

There are a few exceptions to this guide. Any outpatient facilities should have 10% of their spaces to be handicap accessible. Facilities specializing in treatment or for patients with mobility problems must have 20% of their total spaces dedicated to handicap accessible spaces.


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