Setback in wheelchair-access lawsuit

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Plaintiff Brenda Pickern is a visually impaired and mobility-impaired woman who depends on an electric wheelchair for transportation. Pier 1 Imports Inc. operates its store leased from the Siegmund Weinstock Family Trust. The store is separated from the street by a long strip of land containing a public sidewalk and a 10-foot-wide grassy berm. There is no access ramp connecting the sidewalk to the store's parking lot. Both the public sidewalk and the grassy strip are owned and maintained by the city. Purchase Bob Bruss reports online. Pickern cannot traverse the grassy strip in her wheelchair to reach the store. Instead, she must proceed down the sidewalk to one of two main mall entrances or to one of several access ramps connecting the sidewalk to the mall parking lot. The plaintiff sued Pier 1 Imports for violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). She alleged the store and its landlord failed to remove architectural barriers, including building a ramp from the store...