View Full Version : Questions on opening

scattered screams
10-19-2007, 01:57 PM
I have a 31500 sq. ft. building, was used as an warehouse. But now I want to turn it into a haunted house so far it has a sprinkler system in place. And an alarm system. But the city wants me to have Ada compliant male and female restrooms drinking fountain architectural stamped plans parking traffic flow/ access. Just wanted to know if there is more or less I need to do? also what it take to open your haunts?

10-19-2007, 03:03 PM
step 1:

Move buiding to new city. Sounds like you will have a long rough journey to open a haunt. (Not to mention an expencive one!)


10-19-2007, 03:31 PM
I agree.

Our property consists of 3 "real" buildings, "town" that was primarily built with 4x8 walls, on a 55,000sq ft piece of land, not including parking or concessions. No sprinkler in any building. We're actually located in a county owned park.

The restrooms certainly aren't ADA compliant, no drinking fountain, no real plans nor any flow diagrams. I don't believe our attraction even has to be ADA compliant anymore (I could be mistaken on that and we're compliant anyhow).

To open, we get inspected by a Pennsylvania Dept. of Agriculture Amusement inspector (myself or one of our other staff members are licensed). We get inspected by both fire and building inspectors.

That's really about it. We're on good terms with our fire and building inspectors. It goes a long way with them to show that you want to put on a SAFE show. When you get inspected, take a clipboard and legal pad with you and write down every little thing that he has an issue with. If there is anything that you find questionable about work that you have done, ask him his opinion on it.

But I agree with MMManiac. That's a lot of work to open a temporary attraction.

Mr. Haunt
10-19-2007, 05:31 PM
I agree to. I have not heard of such a things. You will have your hands full for sure. I would try and find a new location. Other then that, the building has things some haunters have to pay extra to have built or put in. I am sure that there are even haunts that have no bath rooms. I have not been to one, but I am sure that they are out there.

It sounds like the city has to much control over what it is your wanting to do. Try and go to the City Council and tell them what it is your doing and that you feel that some of those things that they want you to have you don't need. Or ask them if portable tiolets are an option.

I hope that some of these tips help!


10-20-2007, 07:40 AM
I'll add a few things that I failed to mention before.

Most port-a-potty companies rent large units that are actually ADA compliant. We rented one for a fair that I work for in Columbus that was a little mini-building. Male / female seperated and it was huge. It was laid out like a little bathroom with multiple urinals, sinks, etc.

Also, study your codes and look for thing that might be possible loopholes. Back with the old building inspector that hated us, he said we were required to sprinkle our maze (4500 sq ft, 36x124', 4x8 walled, no roof, outside on blacktop, no electric). We found that if we called it a "a temporary fence to direct the flow of traffic", it didn't need to be sprinkled. So we did and to this day it's still not sprinkled.

The only thing I have an issue with is our fire marshal. Nice guy and all and doesn't give us a rough time, but he thinks he's an electrical inspector too. He has outlawed all "brown" extension cords, and by that I mean your standard 2 prong, non grounded lamp cord type with the 3 way tap at the end. Bogus (they're UL listed for Christ sake!), especially for lighting, but whatever, we complied.

This past inspection he got behind a prop and started pulling cords out of (2) 2 gang electrical boxes and swapping them around. I asked him to please stop and asked why he was doing that. He didn't like the way I had it laid out... Long story short, this was a controlled outlet set, 4 different circuits off of the controller, the plugs are where they NEED to be and it won't work any other way. He didn't understand. His beef was on one of the outlets, I had a 3-way cube tap in one of the outlets because I ran out of room due to a few all warts, he didn't like that and instead, wanted a surge strip plugged in. So, we have to go from a $2 15amp rated, UL listed cube tap to a $10 surge protector.

He has pretty much outlawed the use of cube taps in our haunt, wanted every one of them replaced with surge protectors, including outside. His reasoning behind this is because the surge protector has a built in breaker. Well no kidding. I guess the OCPD's in the panel don't count for anything :furious:.

In area's that used to have a 3 way tap, with extension cords plugged into them, where it was fairly weatherproof, now we have to use surge protectors, outside that now are open to even more water intrusion thanks to the open outlets.

Knowing my way around electrical far more than him, this HIGHLY irritates me.

err.. uh.. sorry, I didn't mean to go off topic with my little rant / tangent...

scattered screams
10-20-2007, 09:54 AM
thanks everyone for the input. I guess there was this other guy that tried the same thing earlier this year and just decided to move out of city limits. I'm gonna try to get this haunt up an running for next year. And show the city its not a bad thing to have. See they always find way to shut down all the fun stuff in our town.