Day: April 15, 2017

Casas de Botellas

Bottles for Houses – Alternative Construction Methods

Organizations such as “Hug it Forward” and “Casa de Botellas” (Bottle Houses) have begun to redefine ecological building among low income families. A construction practice that uses glass and plastic bottles to build homes has become an inexpensive as well as an efficient way to provide low-income families with a place to live.  (Photo Courtesy casasconbotellas.com) …

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When is a Stage a Platform in the International Building Code?

One of our current projects is the renovation of the gymnasium at the Denver Montclair International School to add a stage at the end of the gymnasium. The stage area is approximately 1,090 square feet. In the International Building Code a “stage” over 1,000 sf triggers a number of requirements for construction including a standpipe, …

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The Right Way to Use Compact Flourescent Bulbs in Outdoor Fixtures

Hi, Lisa. I’ve been using compact fluorescent bulbs in my outdoor lights, but they don’t look right. They take a long time to light up when it’s cold, but once they’re lit, they’re too bright. What am I doing wrong?  Thanks, Doug Hi Doug. Your question is a great one, since lots of folks are …

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Residential Stair Design – Guidelines, Criteria and Dimensions

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″ clear width above the handrail height. Handrails can’t project more …

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