Need a book? Engineering books recommendations...

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

RE: Structural Plan Review Question

[Subject Prev][Subject Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next]
In British Columbia, we are seeing exactly the opposite - IMO, the
building departments do not want to look at drawings for fear of
attracting liability to themselves.  The really only care that there is
the red stamp on the drawings, and in some areas I honestly believe I
could I could get a building permit with a sealed cartoon! I'm being
fececious but in 15 years of practice, have ever only recieved one call
from a plan checker because of fire resistance rating on a concrete
column in a parkade. 
Also, it is very common here for the building authority to issue a
letter to the Owner and Consultants stating that they will not come to
the site for field review and that this responsibility must be carried
entirely by the consultants.
I am watching the s?#t hit the fan on a local condominium project (about
300 units, construction completed) where
- 50-60% of the footings are under capacity by by 7 to 100% overload
under gravity only.
- 60 % of the concrete columns are under capacity
- transfer slab overloaded by 100%... the list goes on.
This is an extreme case of gross negligence but never would have
happened with independent 3rd party review, the key being "indepedent
3rd party". Myself and my partner have lobbied our association on
numerous occasions that this is really the preferred method for quality
assurance but have never really recieved a warm welcome (in BC engineers
are self governed). 


From: Haan, Scott M POA [mailto:Scott.M.Haan(--nospam--at)] 
Sent: Tuesday, January 03, 2006 2:29 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: RE: Structural Plan Review Question

I worked for a local building department in a home rule municipality.
They actually hire structural engineers to do the work who are willing
to work for the pittance - just kidding guys.   Authority to do
structural review was in the city's charter which I believe had to be
voted on by residents.  I also think the state had to grant the local
government the authority to do structural plan review.  That stuff
happened way before my time.


The municipality had different service areas.  The Building Safety
Service area only covered parts of the municipality.  I think the
building department had it put on the ballot several times to bring the
entire municipality under it's jurisdiction and the homebuilders did
some effective campaigning in the outlying areas and put the cabosh on
it every time.


If you want local structural plan review, I would start by calling with
your local city council man, city manager, state legislators and mayor
and also try to convince  the people who run your local building
department - the ever powerful local homebuilders association.




From: Chuck Hanson [mailto:chuckh(--nospam--at)] 
Sent: Tuesday, January 03, 2006 1:03 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Structural Plan Review Question


Has anyone out there been personally involved in the process of
convincing their local Building Department to implement review of
structural drawings and calculations as part of the permit review
process? Our state and local building departments do not have engineers
on staff qualified to review our work, so they only take a cursory
glance at the structural drawings on most projects. The SEANM has been
discussing the advantages of independent review of structural design
work and would like to hear if any other organizations have been
instrumental in convincing their local governments that this is a good


Please copy your response to me privately as I'm pretty far behind in
reading my mailing list digest. Thank you.


Chuck Hanson PE, SECB      


******* ****** ******* ******** ******* ******* ******* ***
*   Read list FAQ at:
*   This email was sent to you via Structural Engineers 
*   Association of Southern California (SEAOSC) server. To 
*   subscribe (no fee) or UnSubscribe, please go to:
*   Questions to seaint-ad(--nospam--at) Remember, any email you 
*   send to the list is public domain and may be re-posted 
*   without your permission. Make sure you visit our web 
*   site at: 
******* ****** ****** ****** ******* ****** ****** ********