Rehab Code Advances

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Rehabilitation codes that were demonstrated effective in New Jersey have been accepted into the International Residential Code.

November 01, 1999

Rehabilitation codes that were demonstrated effective in New Jersey have been accepted into the International Residential Codes (IRC). The IRC will include an appendix, titled "Work in Existing Buildings," that incorporates the residential aspects of the Nationally Applicable Recommended Rehabilitation Codes created by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The codes, based on the successful New Jersey Rehabilitation Codes, are now part of the national codes embodied by IRC.

Municipalities can adopt the appendix when renewing their existing building codes.
"It’s been two years in the works," says Andy Cattano of the New Jersey Builders Association, and a key proponent of NARRP before the IRC committees. "State and local authorities can now adopt NARRP."

David Dacquisto, vice president of technology for the NAHB Research Center, worked with Cattano on the proposal. Since the NARRP covers all construction, only the sections pertaining to one- and two-family and townhouses were presented to the IRC committee.

"It occurred to us it wouldn’t be difficult to strip out what didn’t apply," Dacquisto says.

"We tried to take this 70- to 80-page document and turn it into a four-page [appendix]."

The new IRC will be printed in early 2000, and local authorities can begin considering it for implementation. Because the provisions are written in an appendix, however, local officials must still adopt that appendix specifically. Still, the appendix will give local building officials a viable option for handling rehabilitation work.

"This is a great facilitator in getting [NARRP] used in areas where building officials are trying to figure out how to deal with these situations," Dacquisto says.

The Research Center proved the cost-effectiveness of NARRP through Professional Remodeler’s Model reMODEL 1998, the Stone Lodge in Chester, N.J.

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