Chapter 5: Boating Facilities

5.1 Number of Facilities

Existing Facilities

The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) estimated there were 11,500 marinas in 1999; 12,000 in 2000; and 12,000 in 2001.51 We assumed 60 percent of the marinas (7,200 facilities) are operated by public entities; and 40 percent (4,800 facilities) are operated by private entities.52

New Construction and Additions

The construction of new marinas has slowed due to environmental restrictions and budgetary constraints. The California Department of Boating and Waterways has constructed only one new marina a year since 1999. The Oregon Marine Board has not constructed any new marinas since 1997. Existing marinas are adding new piers and boat slips to their facilities. Based on the NMMA data and discussions with professionals in the industry, we assumed a 1 percent growth rate for new construction (120 new facilities per year) and a 1 percent growth rate for additions to existing marinas (120 additions per year). We assumed the percentage of new construction and additions by public entities and private entities is the same as the percentage of existing facilities owned and operated by these entities.

Small Entities

For the marinas operated by private entities, using the methodology described in Chapter 2, we estimated 99 percent are small entities . For marinas operated by public entities, we assumed the percentage operated by small governmental jurisdictions is the same as in Table 2.1.

5.2 Final Guidelines

Table 5.1 summarizes the final guidelines for boating facilities.

Table 5.1 - Final Guidelines: Boating Facilities

Section Requirement

15.2.1 General


Application

Newly designed and constructed and altered boating facilities must comply with 15.2.

15.2.2 Accessible Route


General


Exception - Alterations

Exception - Maximum Rise

Exception - Maximum Slope


Exception - Maximum Slope in Small Facilities

Exception - Landings


Exception - Handrail Extensions


Exception - Cross Slope


Exception - LULAs and Platform Lifts

Gangways that are part of accessible routes must comply with accessible route requirements.

Where existing gangways are replaced or altered, gangways are not required to be lengthened unless triggered by alterations to primary function areas.


Maximum 30 inch rise for any run does not apply to gangways.

Maximum 1:12 slope does not apply where total length of gangways serving as part of accessible route is at least 80 feet.

Maximum 1:12 slope does not apply to small facilities with fewer than 25 boat slips where total length of gangways serving as part of accessible route is at least 30 feet.

Where gangways connect to transition plates, landings not required.


Where gangways and transition plates connect and are required to have handrails, handrail extensions not required. Where handrail extensions are provided on gangways or transition plates, extensions not required to be parallel with ground or floor surface.

Cross slope of gangways, transition plates, and floating piers that are part of accessible routes must be 1:50 maximum measured in static position.

Limited use/limited application elevators (LULAs) and platform lifts permitted in lieu of gangways.

15.2.3 Boat Slips


Scoping

 

Dispersion

Where boat slips are provided, accessible boat slips must be provided in accordance with Table 15.2.3, which ranges from 1 accessible boat slip for facilities with 25 or fewer boat slips to 12 accessible boat slips for facilities with 901 to 1000 boat slips (plus 1 additional accessible boat slip for each 100 boat slips over 1000). Where number of boat slips not identified, each 40 feet of boat slip edge provided along perimeter of pier counts as one boat slip.

Accessible boat slips must be dispersed among various types of slips provided. Increase in number of accessible boat slips not required.

15.2.4 Boarding Piers at Boat Launch Ramps

Scoping


Exceptions - Alterations, Maximum Rise, Landings, Handrail Extensions, Cross Slope, LULAs and Platform Lifts


Exception - Maximum Slope


Exception - Accessible Route Within Boat Launch Ramp


Boarding Pier Clearances

Where boarding piers provided at boat launch ramps, at least 5% of boarding piers must be accessible and be served by accessible route.

Accessible routes serving floating boarding piers permitted to use exceptions in 15.2.2 for alterations, maximum rise, landings, handrail extensions, cross slope, LULAs and platform lifts.


Maximum 1:12 slope does not apply where total length of gangways serving as part of accessible route is at least 30 feet.

Where accessible route serving floating boarding pier or skid pier is located within boat launch ramp, portion of accessible route within boat launch ramp not required to comply with ramp provisions.

Accessible boarding piers must comply with 15.2.5 for entire length of piers.

15.2.5 Accessible Boat Slips

Clearances


Exception - Width


Exception - Edge Protection


Exception - Alterations


Cleats and Other Boat Securement Devices

Clear pier space 60 inches wide minimum and at least as long as boat slip must be provided at accessible boat slips. Every 10 feet maximum of linear pier edge must contain at least one continuous clear opening 60 inches minimum in width.

Clear pier space permitted to be 36 inches wide minimum for length of 24 inches maximum, provided that multiple 36 inch wide segments are separated by segments that are 60 inches minimum clear in width and length.


Edge protection 4 inches high maximum and 2 inches deep maximum permitted at continuous pier openings.

In alterations to existing facilities, clear pier space permitted to be located perpendicular to boat slip and extend width of boat slip, where facility has at least one boat slip complying with 15.2.5 and providing additional boat slips complying with 15.2.5 would result in reducing number of boat slips available or reducing widths of existing boat slips.


Cleats and other boat securement devices are not required to comply with height provisions for controls and operating mechanisms.

 

5.3 Alternatives

Table 5.2 presents the alternatives considered in the proposed guidelines and final guidelines. The significant comments raised during the public comment period are summarized in the preamble to the final rule, along with the Access Board’s assessment of the comments and the reasons for selecting the alternative adopted in the final guidelines. The Access Board minimized the significant economic impact of the final guidelines by permitting gangways that are part of an accessible route to exceed the 1:12 maximum slope requirement for ramps where the total length of the gangways is at least 80 feet (or 30 feet for smaller facilities with fewer than 25 boat slips), reducing the number of boat slips required to be accessible in new construction, and modifying the requirements for accessible boat slips in alterations so no more than one boat slip is lost. The final guidelines also allow designers and operators greater flexibility in applying ADAAG to new and altered boating facilities. Other alternatives regarding the maximum slope of gangways were recommended by the Recreation Access Advisory Committee, in the summary of the draft final rule, and during the public comment period, but were rejected because they were too difficult to implement or more costly than the alternative selected.

Table 5.2 - Boating Facilities Alternatives

Item Proposed Guidelines Final Guidelines
Gangways - Maximum Slope Exception permits gangways to exceed 1:12 maximum slope based on distance between design high point and level of water, and square footage of fixed and floating piers. Exception permits gangways to exceed 1:12 maximum slope where total length of gangways serving as part of accessible route is at least 80 feet. Small facilities with fewer than 25 boat slips are permitted to exceed 1:12 maximum slope where total length of gangways serving as part of accessible route is at least 30 feet.
Gangways - Alterations No exception. Where existing gangways are replaced or altered, gangways are not required to be lengthened unless triggered by alterations to primary function areas.
LULAs and Platform Lifts No exception. Limited use/limited application elevators (LULAs) and platform lifts permitted in lieu of gangways.
Boat Slips - Scoping At least 3% of boat slips required to be accessible. Number of boat slips required to be accessible ranges from at least 1 for facilities with 25 or fewer boat slips to 12 for facilities with 901 to 1000 boat slips (plus 1 additional accessible boat slip for each 100 boat slips over 1000).
Accessible Boat Slips - Location Accessible boat slips must be located nearest to amenities. No requirement.
Accessible Boat Slips - Clearances No exceptions. Exception permits clear pier space to be reduced to 36 inches wide minimum for length of 24 inches maximum, provided that multiple 36 inch wide segments are separated by segments that are 60 inches minimum clear in width and length. Exception also permits edge protection 4 inches high maximum and 2 inches deep maximum at continuous pier openings.
Accessible Boat Slips - Alterations No exception. Exception permits clear pier space to be located perpendicular to boat slip and extend width of boat slip in alterations to existing facilities, where facility has at least one boat slip with required clear pier space parallel to the boat slip and providing additional boat slips with required clear pier space parallel to the boat slip would result in reducing number of boat slips available or reducing widths of existing boat slips.
Accessible Boat Slips - Cleats No provision. Cleats and other boat securement devices are not required to comply with height provisions for controls and operating mechanisms.
Boat Launch Ramps Where boarding piers are provided at boat launch ramps, at least one accessible boat slip required adjacent to a boat launch ramp. Where boarding piers are provided at boat launch ramps, at least 5% of boarding piers must be 60 inches wide minimum for entire length of boarding pier and be served by accessible route. Where accessible route serving floating boarding pier or skid pier is located within boat launch ramp, portion of accessible route within boat launch ramp not required to comply with ramp provisions. Accessible routes serving floating boarding piers permitted to use gangways exceptions for alterations, maximum rise, landings, handrail extensions, cross slope, LULAs and platform lifts. Maximum 1:12 slope does not apply where total length of gangways serving as part of accessible route is at least 30 feet.
 

5.4 New Construction Impacts

Gangways: Accessible Route

At marinas, gangways are used to connect land or fixed structures with piers where the boats are moored. Where water levels fluctuate widely due to tides or other conditions, the piers are typically floating structures. As the water levels rise and fall, the gangway slopes also rise and fall. Where gangways connect to accessible boat slips, the accessible route requirements in ADAAG require the maximum slope to be 1:12 and the maximum rise for any run to be 30 inches.53 Designing and constructing gangway systems that would maintain a 1:12 maximum slope and 30 inch maximum rise as water levels fluctuate can be cost prohibitive depending on the maximum vertical level change. The final guidelines provide exceptions for the maximum gangway slope and rise. Gangways are permitted to exceed the 1:12 maximum slope where the total length of gangways serving as part of an accessible route is at least 80 feet (or 30 feet for smaller facilities with fewer than 25 boat slips). Gangways are also permitted to exceed the 30 inch maximum rise.

There are no national codes or standards for the design of gangways. We used information provided by the Oregon State Marine Board. Oregon commonly provides a 30 foot gangway where the maximum vertical level change between land and the pier is less than 10 feet, and a 50 foot gangway where the maximum vertical level change between land and the pier is between 10 feet and 16 feet. We assumed 10 percent of the new marinas constructed each year (12 facilities) would have fewer than 25 boat slips, and these small marinas would provide at least a 30 foot gangway in the absence of the final guidelines and would not incur additional costs. We used three models to estimate the incremental costs for the other 108 new marinas constructed each year to comply with the final guidelines.54

  • Model A: Maximum Vertical Level Change Less Than 2.5 Feet - Where the maximum vertical level change between land and the pier is less than 2.5 feet, we assumed the pier is a fixed structure and the gangway would comply with the accessible route requirements in ADAAG in the absence of the final guidelines. There are no incremental unit costs for new marinas to comply with the final guidelines in model A. We assumed 20 percent of the other 108 new marinas constructed each year (22 facilities) would be in model A.
  • Model B: Maximum Vertical Level Change More Than 2.5 Feet But Less Than 10 Feet - Where the maximum vertical level change between land and the pier is more than 2.5 feet but less than 10 feet, we assumed a 30 foot gangway would be provided to a floating pier in the absence of the final guidelines. Depending on the maximum vertical level change at a specific site, the final guidelines would require a gangway ranging from 30.1 feet to 80 feet. The increase in cost based on gangway length is not a linear relationship. Professionals from different areas of the country estimated the average additional cost for constructing gangways in model B to comply with the accessible route requirements in ADAAG, as modified by the final guidelines, would range from $15,000 to $35,000. We used these amounts as lower and upper bounds. We assumed 40 percent of the other 108 new marinas constructed each year (43 facilities) would be in model B, and estimated the total annual compliance costs for these new marinas to range from $0.6 million to $1.5 million.
  • Model C: Maximum Vertical Level Change More Than 10 Feet - Where the maximum vertical level change between land and the pier is more than 10 feet, we assumed a 50 foot gangway would be provided to a floating pier in the absence of the final guidelines. The final guidelines would require at least an 80 foot gangway. The Oregon State Marine Board estimated the additional cost for constructing an 80 foot gangway would be $33,000.55 Local factors will affect the costs. Professionals in other areas of the country estimated the additional cost would be $45,000 or more for some marinas. We used these amounts as lower and upper bounds. We assumed 40 percent of the other 108 new marinas constructed each year (43 facilities) would be in model C, and estimated the total annual compliance costs for these new marinas to range from $1.4 million to $1.9 million.

Accessible Boat Slips

The final guidelines require accessible boat slips to be provided in accordance with a table, which ranges from 1 accessible boat slip for facilities with 25 or fewer boat slips to 12 accessible boat slips for facilities with 901 to 1000 boat slips (plus 1 additional accessible boat slip for each 100 boat slips over 1000). Accessible boat slips must provide a minimum of 60 inches wide clear pier space for the length of the slip. At newly constructed marinas, main piers are typically 6 feet to 8 feet wide, and finger piers are 3 feet to 5 feet wide. We assumed the requirements for accessible boat slips would have minimal impact on new construction.

Boat Launch Ramps: Accessible Boarding Piers

Where boarding piers are provided at boat launch ramps, the final guidelines require at least 5 percent of the boarding piers to be accessible. Gangways that connect to accessible boarding piers are permitted to exceed the 1:12 maximum slope where the total length of the gangways is at least 30 feet.

Accessible boarding piers must provide a minimum of 60 inches wide clear pier space for the length of the pier. Newly constructed fixed boarding piers are typically 4 feet to 6 feet wide; and newly constructed floating boarding piers are 6 feet to 8 feet wide. We assumed the requirements for accessible boarding piers at boat launch ramps would have minimal impact on new construction.

5.5 Additions Impacts

We assumed the 120 additions to existing marinas each year construct new gangways, piers, and boat slips. We assumed the marinas would have more than 25 boat slips after the additions. We used the same models as we used for new construction of gangways to estimate the incremental costs for the 120 additions to comply with the final guidelines. We estimated the total annual compliance costs to range from $2.3 million to $3.9 million.

5.6 Alterations Impacts

The final guidelines include two exceptions that will minimize the impacts on alterations to existing marinas. The first exception affects gangways. Where an existing gangway is altered or replaced, an increase in the length of the gangway is not required, unless a primary function area (e.g., boat slips) is altered or replaced. If the additional cost of providing a gangway complying with the accessible route requirements in ADAAG, as modified by the final guidelines, is disproportionate to the cost of the overall alterations, the duty to comply is limited.56 The second exception affects boat slips. Where at least one accessible boat slip has a minimum of 60 inches clear pier space for the length of the boat slip, and providing a minimum of 60 inches clear pier space for the length of additional boat slips would result in a reduction of the number of boat slips available or a reduction in the widths of existing boat slips, the clear pier space is permitted to be located perpendicular to the accessible boat slips.

We assumed a 20 year replacement schedule with 600 existing marinas being altered each year. We assumed 25 percent of existing marinas (150 facilities) have fewer than 25 boat slips.57 We assumed in the absence of the final guidelines these small marinas would provide at least 30 foot gangways when altering or replacing gangways and would not incur additional costs. We also assumed 25 percent of the existing marinas with 25 or more boat slips (112 facilities) would not have to alter gangways to meet the accessible route requirements in ADAAG, as modified by the final guidelines, because the cost would be disproportionate to the cost of the overall alterations, or because existing physical or site constraints would make compliance technically infeasible.58 We used the same models as we used for new construction of gangways to estimate the incremental costs for alterations to the remaining 337 existing marinas to comply with the final guidelines. We estimated the total annual compliance costs to range from $6.5 million to $10.7 million.

5.7 Total Costs

For marinas, the total annual compliance costs ranges from $10.8 million to $18.0 million. See Table 5.3.

Table 5.3 - Annual Compliance Costs for Marinas

Item Cost (Millions)
New Construction $2.0 - $3.4
Additions $2.3 - $3.9
Alterations $6.5 - $10.7
Total $10.8 - $18.0