Synthesis of Information Related to Transit Practices. Topic SB-31. Implementing the US DOT Reasonable Modification Rule

Since July 2015, the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) has required transit agencies to make “reasonable accommodations” to their policies, practices, and procedures to ensure that their services are accessible to persons with disabilities. Whether on a case-by-case request, or as a permanent change, transit agencies must adjust what they do to meet the needs of these riders. The revised regulation cites three situations when a transit agency may deny a request for an accommodation: (1) Granting the request would fundamentally alter the nature of the entity’s services, programs, or activities; (2) Granting the request would create a direct threat to the health or safety of others; (3) Without the requested modification, the individual with a disability is able to fully use the entity’s services, programs, or activities for their intended purpose. [49 CFR 37.169(c)] The goal of this study is to provide an overview of the current state of practice regarding the experiences of transit agencies as they have responded to the regulation: new policies developed; actual requests for accommodations; responses to these requests; and ideas for improving the process. Information will be gathered by a literature review (e.g. agency reports, peer reviewed journal articles, web articles) and a survey on a broad range of North American transit agencies to identify what changes agencies have made in response to this regulation—which applies to both fixed route and paratransit service. This Synthesis will not seek to determine whether a transit agency is in compliance with the revised rule, nor will the synthesis recommend actions for achieving compliance. The report should include 4-5 case examples that will gather information on the state-of-the-practice, emphasizing lessons learned, current practices, challenges, and gaps. The needs for future research should also be discussed.


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $45000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project J-07, Topic SB-31

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Transit Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001

    Federal Transit Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Garcia-Colberg, Mariela

  • Performing Organizations:

    KFH Group, Incorporated

    4630 Montgomery Avenue, Suite 520
    Bethesda, MD  United States  20814-
  • Principal Investigators:

    Hamby, Beth

  • Start Date: 20170602
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 20190416
  • Source Data: RiP Project 41622

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01634929
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project J-07, Topic SB-31
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: May 18 2017 10:05AM