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A historical perspective on building heights and areas in the British Columbia building code

2008

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Summary

"A historical perspective on building heights and areas in the British Columbia building code This report has been prepared at the request of the Building and Safety Policy Branch of the Office of Housing and Construction Standards in British Columbia, and responds to three questions pertaining to the basis and development of the height and area requirements for combustible residential construction in the current edition of the British Columbia Building Code (2006 Edition). The three questions are: 1. What is the historical rationale for limiting the height and area of combustible residential construction to 3 storeys for an unsprinklered building and 4 storeys for a sprinklered building? 2. How has the building code, relative to the construction requirements for residential construction, adapted to recognize the benefits of sprinklering? And does sprinklering a residential building provide a new rationale for reconsidering the underlying assumptions affecting height and area of a building? 3. Is there a different rationale underlying the assumptions in the International Building Code (United States) vis-à-vis height and area compared to those in the BC Building Code and is it possible to use these IBC assumptions to reconsider the rationale for our height and area calculations?"--Introduction.

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