stair

Residential Spiral Stairs – Guidelines, Criteria and Dimensions

by Sean O'Hara May 19, 2017

Spiral staircases may be an option for your residential applications where you can’t fit a conventional staircase. These are the rules from the 2006 International Residential Code. Spiral staircases have to be at least 26″ wide with each tread being at least 7.5″ deep when […]

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Commercial Ramp Design – Guidelines, Criteria and Dimensions

by Sean O'Hara May 15, 2017

The 2006 International Building Code dictates the rules for ramps used in commercial buildings. The rules apply to most ramps in a building excepting ramped aisles in theaters, curb ramps and vehicle ramps in parking garages. The code also covers those conditions, but they have […]

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Residential Stair Design – Guidelines, Criteria and Dimensions

by Sean O'Hara April 15, 2017

I received a question about stair width from one of our clients and thought it made sense to clarify the typical stair design rules for houses. These are the rules that are in the 2006 International Residential Code. Stairways have to be at least 36″ […]

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Do all Awesome Stairs Designed by Architects Ignore the Building Code?

by EVstudio AEP June 10, 2016
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It’s an inside joke among architects that stairs drawn for the permit office are usually heavily modified post-occupancy. How else could the below images pass muster against the myriad constraints presented in Chapter 10 of the International Building Code?              […]

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Commercial Stair Design – Guidelines, Criteria and Dimensions

by Sean O'Hara June 10, 2016

After seeing the popularity of my post on Residential Stair Design, I thought it made sense to explain the guidelines from the 2006 International Building Code for commercial buildings and common stairs in buildings with more than two dwelling units. It is much more complex […]

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Handrail Extensions for Commercial Stairs

by evstudio October 22, 2015
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Handrail extensions are required for all commercial stairs. Handrails should return to a wall, guardrail or walking surface, or should be continuous to the handrail of an adjacent stair flight or ramp run.  If handrails are not continuous, they should extend a minimum of 12 […]

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Stair Construction Tolerance and Dimensional Uniformity

by Sean O'Hara May 10, 2015

The 2006 International Building Code calls out the tolerance for how consistent each stair tread and riser needs to be in a set of stairs. The code refers to it as dimensional uniformity. What the IBC states on stair tolerance is that the difference between […]

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Slope on Stair Treads and Landings

by Sean O'Hara December 2, 2014

I received an email today from an individual who’s contractor had built an exterior concrete stair for them. Each tread sloped 3/4″ down from back to front. I quickly emailed them back to let them know that isn’t up to code and in fact is […]

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New Definitions of Stair and Stairway Under 2009 IRC

by Kacy Landsittel December 22, 2009

Under the 2009 International Residential Code, there are new definitions of Stair and Stairway. The new Stair definition is that it would have one or more risers and the new definition of Stairway is that it has one or more flights of stairs, interior or exterior, […]

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Steep Stairs Are Allowed in Theater Assembly Aisles

by Sean O'Hara September 24, 2009

In the International Building Code you are allowed to have a riser height of 7″ for most occupancies. However, it theater aisles you can get away with a lot more. Where the graident of the seating area matches the stair gradient you can go to […]

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Installing New Doors at an Exit Stair – Joy Burns Arena at the Ritchie Center

by Sean O'Hara December 3, 2008

EVstudio has been hired to do a number of projects at the University of Denver both large and small. This one is the small task of adding some doors to the top of a stairway at the Joy Burns Arena. There are two tricks with […]

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