Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Sharp v. Capitol City Brewing Co.

January 14, 2010

DAVID C. SHARP, PLAINTIFF,
v.
CAPITOL CITY BREWING COMPANY, LLC, DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Royce C. Lamberth Chief Judge United States District Court

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Plaintiff David C. Sharp brings this action against defendant Capitol City Brewing Company ("Restaurant"), alleging violations of Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA"), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12181--12189. Before the Court are defendant's motion for summary judgment and plaintiff's cross-motion for summary judgment. Upon consideration of the motions, the replies, the oral arguments of counsel, the record of this case, and the applicable law, the Court concludes that each motion should be granted in part and denied in part, and that two of plaintiff's claims should be dismissed for lack of standing.

I. Background

Plaintiff is quadriplegic with very limited use of one of his arms and uses a wheelchair for mobility.*fn1 (Pl.'s Aff. [28-2] ¶ 2.) In October 2007, plaintiff visited defendant's restaurant at 1100 New York Avenue, NW in Washington, D.C. (Id.) On October 19, 2007, plaintiff sent a letter to the Restaurant to complain about architectural barriers to wheelchair access in the men's restroom of that restaurant. In the letter, he gave the Restaurant fifteen days to sign and return an agreement drafted by his attorney. (Letter of Oct. 19, 2007 [25-3].) Under the agreement, plaintiff would decline to sue the Restaurant under the ADA in exchange for the Restaurant's acknowledging architectural barriers, creating a plan to remedy the barriers, and sharing the plan with plaintiff. (Id.) The Restaurant responded nineteen days later with a note of apology and an explanation that it was planning to renovate the restroom anyway and would be sure to make it ADA compliant in the process. (Letter of Nov. 6, 2007 [25-3].) Plaintiff responded that the Restaurant did not comply with his demand, and he filed suit on November 6, 2007. (Letter of Nov. 8, 2007 [25-3].)

The Restaurant drafted architectural plans to renovate its restroom and provided plaintiff with those plans in January 2008. (Pl.'s Cross Mot. for Summ. J. [29] at 2.) However, plaintiff determined that these plans were not ADA-compliant and informed the Restaurant. (Id.) The Restaurant then commissioned new plans that, in plaintiff's opinion, would have rendered the restroom ADA-compliant if the Restaurant followed them exactly. (Pl.'s Cross Mot. for Summ. J. [29] at 2.)

Both parties moved for summary judgment, and the Court ruled on the motions after renovations to the restroom were completed in March 2009. (Pl.'s Cross Mot. for Summ. J. [29] at 2--3.) The Court denied the motions because neither party had provided evidence of compliance or non-compliance. (Order [24] at 1--2.) On April 6, 2009, the Restaurant filed a Renewed Motion for Summary Judgment [25], including photos of the newly renovated restroom. After visiting the restroom on April 21, plaintiff determined that it still presented barriers to access and filed an opposition and cross-motion for summary judgment. (Pl.'s Cross Mot. for Summ. J. [29] at 3.)

Plaintiff claims five barriers to access:

(1) The grab rail next to the toilet ("water closet"*fn2 ) is mounted above the maximum height allowed under the ADA Accessibility Guidelines ("ADAAG"). (Pl.'s Cross Mot. for Summ. J. [29] at 8.)

(2) A portable trash can is located next to the water closet, but this space must be clear of any obstructions to ease transfer from a wheelchair onto the water closet. (Id. at 5, 8.)

(3) The ADA-compliant toilet paper dispenser was empty during plaintiff's visit, whereas a second, non-ADA compliant dispenser mounted too far away for plaintiff to reach was full. (Id. at 4, 8.)

(4) The non-ADA compliant toilet paper dispenser mounted directly in front of the toilet juts out 6" from the wall. This dispenser reduces the depth of the stall to 52", which is 4" less than the required minimum depth and which inhibits the maneuverability of plaintiff's wheelchair. (Id.)

(5) A curtain mounted below the sink ("lavatory") violates the minimum required clearance from the floor to the lavatory. (Id. at 8 & n.2.)

Plaintiff asks the Court to order the removal of the alleged barriers and to order the Restaurant to provide ADA awareness ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.