15-0129 v2.1/Te Wharehou O Tuhoe/ADA Disabled Car Park Sizes - New Zealand Projects


For our project in New Zealand we have reviewed the ADA standards against the New Zealand Building Code.

NZBC D1/AS1 Access Routes cl. 10.2.1 cites AS/NZS 2890.6 Off-street parking Part 6: Off-street parking for people with disabilities as a means of compliance.

That standard gives the NZ dimensions in cl. 2.2.1 as: 2400mm wide plus an 1100mm wide shared area giving 3500mm as the minimum width for a single park or 4900mm for two parks. The car parks need to be 5000mm deep.

For car parking, we would like to obtain formal approval for New Zealand projects in general to proceed with the physical dimensions stipulated in the New Zealand Building Code for the following reasons:

Regular cars and vans

The average NZ car is much smaller than US models so the parking dimensions required are less.

The New Zealand disabled community has set their cars and hoists up to use the NZ dimensioned car park in terms of both the vehicle space and the space for unloading, setting up a wheelchair and getting into and out of it.

Because of these the New Zealand sized car park fully meets all of the performance requirements of a disabled car park and any additional size would be wasteful and increase travel distances.

Large Vans

Large vans are sometimes used by those with high levels of disability but these are smaller than many American vans typically being Japanese or European sourced. We have provided accessible car parks in addition to the numbers required under ADA and therefore the expectation is that on the rare occasions that a large van does visit the site it is able to easily make use of two car parks in order to provide adequate parking and side on unloading.

Thank You.


The Living Building Challenge ensures that access for those with disabilities is safeguarded through compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) because it is one of the most thorough and stringent standards of its kind in the world.

However, we recognize that there are countries and circumstances where the ADA may not be suited and local regulations are sufficient or even more stringent. In such situations a project team must provide a thorough analysis of the relevant ADA requirements and their equivalent local standards. If a project team can demonstrate that their local code requirements meet the intent of the ADA requirement through different means then the local code will be accepted as compliant with this Imperative.

While we agree that it is appropriate to reduce parking size requirements given the smaller vehicle sizes in New Zealand, we require a more complete analysis of all ADA regulations and how they are addressed in New Zealand for this request to be approved.

For an example, please see the Dialogue Post under Democracy and Social Justice entitled ‘Australian equivalent of ADA’ posted on July 30, 2012. 

Post ID 2078

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