Upper Kitchen Cabinetry Equivalent Facilitation Letter (2017-2019)

MOPD’s Accessibility Compliance Unit has made the following determination of equivalent facilitation.  

As an option to installing upper kitchen cabinets in “Type A” units so that the height of the lowest shelf is no more than 48 inches AFF, rental apartment units with on-site management may be designed and constructed with adjustable upper-level cabinets that may be initially installed so that their lowest shelves have a height no greater than 54 inches AFF if the following conditions are met:

  1. Type A units using the alternative design must do so using cabinets that are easily adjustable by building maintenance staff trained to conduct the work and shall require only simple modifications using appropriate blocking installed at the time of initial construction.  Cabinets located above ranges, stovetops, sinks, and refrigerators are exempt from the adjustability requirement.

  2. At the request of any resident or any person who has contracted to become a resident of a Type A unit, the upper cabinets will be adjusted to have a reach range of 48 inches AFF to the top of the lowest cabinet shelf.  The adjustment will be completed by and at the expense of the management company or owner of the buildings, using building maintenance staff within one (1) week of the request or before the date the resident moves into the unit if the requester is not yet living there.

  3. Any units that receive an adjustment as described in item 2 will have all finishes restored (including paint, backsplash, cabinet filler panels, and other features) at the time the cabinets are adjusted to ensure they maintain an equal standard of quality to that of all other units.

  4. Maintenance of staff assigned to the building shall be trained and have written instructions explaining in detail how the height of the cabinets can be adjusted.

  5. Maintenance staff shall store and have on hand all appropriate tools, equipment, and cabinet hardware required to adjust the cabinets in Type A units.

  6. Management and rental staff shall be trained to work with tenants on the procedures to accomplish the cabinet adjustment.

  7. Marketing materials shall indicate the availability of the modification to the upper cabinets in Type A units.

  8. Each Type A unit shall contain a written notification, posted in a location visible to prospective and current residents, notifying them of the availability of the cabinet adjustment.  The notice must indicate that:
    1. The adjustment can be made by building maintenance staff;
    2. Lowering the cabinets is a simple modification that will have no detrimental impact on the unit (see item 3);
    3. The modification will be made at no cost to the resident; and
    4. The modification will be completed within one (1) week of the date of the request, or before move-in.

  9. If at any time the Type A units are converted to condominiums or other sales units, the upper kitchen cabinets shall be adjusted by building maintenance staff so that the height of the lowest cabinet shelf top is no more than 48 inches AFF and meets all other requirements for Type A units before the conversion or sale of the units.

All design proposals taking advantage of this determination of equivalent facilitation must receive prior approval from MOPD.  Each request for approval must be accompanied by the equivalent facilitation proposal letter at the designated link below, signed by the architect of record and the owner of the facility, enclosing the proposed design of the kitchen and the adjustable cabinets.