Section 202.3 of the 2010 ADA Standards requires business occupancies that alter buildings, to do so in a manner which makes their facility readily accessible.
Question: What is the primary function rule for alterations?
Answer: Section 202.4 says, when primary or core areas of a building are remodeled, those areas or elements that are remodeled are required to be made accessible. This means that whatever elements you choose to alter, the construction is to be done by following new construction accessibility requirements.
Question: Are there exceptions to the new construction standards for alterations?
Answer: Many of the scoping requirements in Chapter 2 of the standards contain exceptions for altered facilities. The index in the back of the ADA Standards is useful for finding these; see “Alteration(s)”.
NOTE: The answers provided are the opinion of the author, and should not be relied upon as ADA interpretations may vary.