When the University of Michigan Wolverines opened the football season in August, the school's stadium in Ann Arbor had space to accommodate more than 180 wheelchair users and their companions.
The additional accessible seating was installed in the 108,000-capacity facility as part of a settlement of an accessibility lawsuit brought by the Michigan Paralyzed Veterans of America. The school was carrying out a $226 million renovation of the stadium, and the veterans group contended that the planned upgrades violated the Americans with Disabilities Act because they did not include enough seating for those with disabilities.
After the U.S. Justice Department joined the suit on behalf of the disabled veterans, the university agreed in March to settle the case.
Michigan has agreed that by 2010, the stadium will have more than 300 pairs of seats for wheelchair users and their companions. The university also will add accessible parking, improve inaccessible toilet rooms, and provide accessible routes to and throughout the stadium, the Justice Department says.