City Boards and Commissions

ADA Accessibility Improvements Made Throughout the City

Project Civic Access - Settlement Agreement with the DOJ

Project Civic Access
In 2015, the City of Cedar Rapids executed a Project Civic Access Settlement Agreement with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). Project Civic Access is a wide-ranging, proactive initiative designed to ensure that cities and counties throughout the country comply with the ADA by eliminating physical and communication barriers.

City departments have been working to address all of the findings included in the Settlement Agreement. The City also hired an independent licensed architect and accessibility firm to survey all remaining City facilities and sites to identify barriers and to assist in the development of the City's transition plan to remediate these barriers. Work to correct these compliance issues range from moving a restroom grab bar or soap dispenser to larger projects such as reconstructing accessible routes or parking spaces. In addition, the City has been correcting all inaccessible curb ramps that have been constructed or altered since January 26, 1992 to meet ADA compliance standards.   

On May 5, 2019, the Department of Justice closed its file on the settlement agreement due to the adequate demonstration of progress in making accessibility improvements in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in:
  • City programs, policies, and procedures;
  • City-owned facilities, park sites and infrastructure; and
  • Curb ramps 
It remains a high priority of the City to remove barriers and provide equitable opportunities so that people of all abilities can access City facilities and parks with ease, feel welcomed and included to participate in programs and services, and travel freely and safely at intersections throughout the City.

Settlement Agreement between the United States of America and the City of Cedar Rapids, Iowa under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Settlement Agreement File Closure Letter

Notice Under the Americans with Disabilities Act

ADA Update
The City of Cedar Rapids is committed to the goals of the Americans with Disabilities Act and will continue to strive to be the most accessible community in Iowa. See the progress that has been made below:

 Completed Facilities & Park Projects
  1. Parks in NW and NE Quadrants
  2. Pools/Aquatic Centers/Splash Pads - Bender, Bever, Cherry Hill, Ellis, & Jones
  3. Old McDonald's Farm
  4. Ushers Ferry Historic Village
  5. Noelridge Greenhouse
  6. Tait Cummins Park
  7. Tuma Sports Complex
  8. Twin Pines Golf Course & Mini-Pines Miniature Golf Course
  9. Imon Ice Arena
  10. Veterans Memorial Stadium
  11. Alliant PowerHouse Convention Center
  12. Downtown Library
  13. Ladd Library
  14. Fire Station #7
  15. City Hall
  16. City Services Center
  17. Water Pollution Control (WPC)
  18. Water Administration Building
  19. Police Department and Police Shooting Range
  20. GTC parking ramp
  21. 4th Avenue parking ramp
  22. Convention Center parking ramp
  23. Mays Island parking ramp
  24. Southside parking ramp
  25. Skywalks
  26. Paramount Theatre

Facility Projects Under Construction (2022)

  • Ground Transportation Center (GTC) 
  • NW Bus Garage 
  • Animal Control 
  • Transit stops
  • SE Quadrant Parks
  • Prairie Park Fishery
Future Facility and Park Projects (2022+)
  • SW Quadrant Parks 
  • Fire Stations (Central and Station #3)
  • Veterans Memorial Building
  • Third Avenue & Five Seasons parking ramps
  • Other Water facilities 

Curb Ramps
According to the Settlement Agreement, the City is required to reconstruct all non-compliant curb ramps that have been constructed or altered since January 26, 1992 – which is when the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) went into effect. Out of 12,000+ total curb ramps in the city, staff identified 4,322 curb ramps as needing to be reconstructed based on this criterion. These include sidewalk curbs that have no ramps at all, or sidewalk curbs with pre-existing ramps that are now out of compliance with current standards.

To date, 3,897 of the 4,322 curb ramps have been constructed to comply with the ADA. Public Works staff will continue to address the remaining curb ramps within the City through a yearly repair program.

A map showing the locations of completed ramps along with ramps that are pending replacement can be found on the Public Works ADA Accessibility page on the City’s website.

Transit stops
The Public Works Department has been in coordination with the Transit Division and is working on design of a number of ADA transit stop upgrades in high need areas throughout the City.  A project will be bid in early 2022 for construction starting in the spring of 2022. 

Accessible Pedestrian Signals (APS)
The City is updating to Accessible Pedestrian Signals whenever signal replacement is required or new signals are added as part of construction. A complete list of locations of Accessible Pedestrian Signals can be found on the Traffic Engineering page on the City’s website. 

The Information Technology Department is assisted by a website accessibility consultant to audit the City’s website and mobile app on an annual basis to identify accessibility issues that need to be corrected. Once the results are received they work with our website vendor and internally to correct the identified issues.

Investing in ADA Improvements
ADA improvement totals to date (2016-2022) - $37 M allocated for all ADA improvements projects (money spent or budgeted through FY21): $17M for curb ramps; $13M for Parks and Recreation facilities & sites; $7M for city-owned facilities, parking ramps, and skywalks.

New Construction
The City has initiated a proactive review process to ensure that all new and renovated City facilities and sites are fully compliant with ADA requirements and State and local code. All project designs are reviewed by the City's accessibility consultant and Facilities staff trained on the ADA standards. Throughout the construction phase, Facilities staff make frequent site visits including a punch list and final walk through. Once the project is complete, a post-construction audit is conducted by the accessibility consultants. The goal of this involved review process is to address all compliance issues as early as possible to ensure our facilities are fully accessible and to eliminate the need for future remediation efforts.

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