Need a book? Engineering books recommendations...

Return to index: [Subject] [Thread] [Date] [Author]

RE: Federal building code future

[Subject Prev][Subject Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]
In my opinion, owners are constantly stipulating design criteria.  Many
of these criteria exceed code requirements.  In high wind areas, I am
constantly being asked to design residential homes to withstand wind
speeds that are significantly higher than code minimums.  Many large
manufacturing companies are designing their warehouses and factories to
withstand loads in excess of code minimums.  Many local jurisdictions
are adopting their own additions or modifications of the code.  

The federal government builds hundreds of buildings every year.  If they
adopt a standard to be applied to all federally funded projects, I'm not
sure that there is anything we can do except call our congressmen (they
will find an engineer who will design the project to their standards).
I'm sure that the feds will lobby with the idea that their standards are
stricter than the codes and will use examples such as Oklahoma City to
rally their point around.  This may eventually effect the existing codes
but there are many many engineers and code boards who I'm sure will not
sit back and allow the federal government to step in and take over the
existing code approval procedure.

FEMA is the closest form to an accepted code governing body and yet
there have been many modifications to their requirements as a direct
result of input and critique from the private sector.  One thing to
think about is the current research side of code development.  It took a
very long time before the private sector realized the importance of
steel stud/structural wood panel shear wall testing.  Then to get the
funding from the different manufacturers and technical associations
slowed the entire process down (this process has been in effect well
over 5-7 years).  Federally funded research (this may well be as slow a
process if not slower) is much more abundant.  This research can be
directed and applied to many more areas than private funding may allow.