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News Submission of Proposals for Alternative Accessible Surface Materials for use in Playground Fall Zones

  • Architectural Access Board

On January 7, 2019 the Architectural Access Board (“Board”) voted to establish a two year trial period for alternative accessible surface materials for use in playground fall zones.  During this two year period the Board will be accepting the use of alternative materials on a case-by-case basis, and soliciting written feedback from members of the public throughout the trial period  


Requirements to Use an Alternative Accessible Surface Material

As part of this trial period, the Board requires that organizations seeking to use alternative accessible materials submit a formal, written proposal to the Board for review and approval.  

Proposals must include the following:

  • Detailed information regarding the location of the playground, including its address and the name and address of the legal owner of the property.
  • A drawing of the playground that highlights the proposed location of the accessible routes utilizing the proposed alternative accessible surface materials.
  • Manufacturer specifications for the proposed alternative material, which should include, but is not limited to:
    • Fastening requirements and instructions, as applicable;
    • Upkeep and maintenance recommendations or requirements issued by the manufacturer; and
    • Copies of any and all fall and material safety certificates.
  • A 1’x 1’ sample of the proposed surface material.
  • A sample of the proposed fasteners, as applicable.
  • A valid mailing address for the person or organization responsible for the project.

Only complete submissions, defined as a written proposal including all of the above-mentioned information and materials, will be reviewed by the Board. Submissions may be reviewed at the next, regularly scheduled Board meeting, provided the proposal is received more than 48 hours prior to the meeting (excluding weekends and holidays). 

If the Board accepts the proposal, copies of all documents submitted will be posted on a special section of the Board’s website setup for the purpose of providing the public with information on proposed alternative materials.  Written notice of the Board’s acceptance will also be provided to the petitioner via certified mail.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the Board's staff at 617-727-0660.

How to Submit Feedback or Comments

Throughout this period the Board will be accepting feedback and comments from members of the public in order to better understand the effects of alternative materials on the accessibility of play equipment not only at the time of installation, but over the long term.  Comments must be submitted in writing, and we would request they include the name and address of the playground that is the subject of the comment so we can clearly identify which comments are related to which surface material types.

Comments can be submitted to the Board via either mail or email. 

  • Emailed comments can be sent to or  As a courtesy we request you include "Playground Material Comment" in the subject line of your email.
  • Mailed comments can be sent to: Architectural Access Board, 1000 Washington Street, Suite 710, Boston, MA 02118

Architectural Access Board 

The Architectural Access Board (AAB) develops and enforces regulations designed to make public buildings accessible to, functional for, and safe for use by persons with disabilities.