The ADA, ICC/ANSI A117.1 and Kitchen Sinks in Break Rooms

by EVstudio AEP June 10, 2016

Building codes and guidelines are always full of exceptions and variations on a theme and the Americans with Disabilities Act is no different. The ADA was first created in 1990. It is designed to protect against discrimination based on disability. The act has five titles […]

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Staples or Nails? Choosing the Right Fastener for Wall and Roof Sheathing

by Dean Dalvit June 10, 2016

We are often asked by contractors if they can substitute framing staples instead of nails for their wall and roof sheathing fasteners. There is no easy universal answer to this question because the location of the project may place it in a high wind or […]

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Understanding Xcel Design Requirements for Transformer Rooms

by Dean Dalvit June 3, 2016
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There are several design requirements that must be met in order to provide a transformer room within the building for your project. First, the fire ratings of the walls and ceiling must be a three hour assembly. Ventilation must be provided as well as street […]

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Type ‘A’ vs. Type ‘B’ in Residential Design

by EVstudio AEP May 17, 2016

Type A dwelling units are those that are required by and defined in the International Building Code. These units are referenced in Chapter 11 of the IBC and have to comprise at least 2% of the units in R-2 occupancies so long as there is […]

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Can I Re-Use My Existing Building?

by EVstudio AEP April 22, 2016

With the increased demand for a more sustainable way to use buildings, adaptive reuse of existing buildings has become a viable economic solution. Adaptive reuse consists of improving, remodeling, and adding to an existing structure for either different or more extensive spatial requirements. The first […]

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What in the World is a Ufer Ground?

by evstudio April 21, 2016

In EVstudio’s structural engineering practice this question comes up almost every week. In contemporary construction, a ufer is a concrete encased ground electrode, which is most often a 20 foot long piece of #4 rebar cast into a foundation wall that will protrude from the […]

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Rating of Floors and Ceilings of Exit Enclosures

by Bill Foster March 24, 2016

(Disclaimer: Code Analysis especially for egress and fire ratings is very building specific and a solution that works for one building may not work for another.) In a recent project I set about to solve a question that occurs quite frequently in multi-story buildings. Can […]

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Sound Transmission Class (STC) and Impact Insulation Class (IIC) Between Dwelling Units

by Sean O'Hara March 2, 2016

In multifamily building construction you need to insulate the dwelling units for sound. When using the International Building Code all common interior walls, partitions and floor/ceiling assemblies between adjacent units and between units and hallways, stairs and service areas need to be insulated. There are […]

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The Escalating Cost of Escalators

by Dean Dalvit February 5, 2016

Often in larger scale commercial developments, vertical circulation is handled by escalators in addition to elevators in order to move large volumes of people from one space to another. Escalators are complex truss structures with a remarkable mechanism of chained treads that move in sync […]

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All Handheld Showers Require Backflow Protection

by Dean Dalvit June 17, 2015
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We do a large amount of design work in the medical sector and are often called upon to do a code analysis on existing facilities that are being renovated. Recently, we were asked by one of our Clients to look at the hand held showers […]

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Top 10 Effective Techniques for Working With a Building Department on Permits

by Sean O'Hara June 10, 2015

Construction projects in most jurisdictions will need to be signed off by the building department in that jurisdiction. Even for the most experienced architects and engineers, there is a chance of having review comments put forth. The trick is knowing the most effective way to […]

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Where the Building Code Requires More Than Two Exits

by Sean O'Hara April 20, 2015

In most building types the occupant count is low enough that the building is only required to have  one or two exits. The International Building Code calls out where you must have more. In each story where you have 501-1,000 occupants you are required to […]

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