International Building Code Ready for Adoption

After several years of effort from New Jersey westward, the International Conference of Building Officials (ICBO) has released the International Building Code.

March 05, 2000
Rod Sutton's Editorial Archives

After several years of effort from New Jersey westward, theInternational Conference of Building Officials (ICBO) has released the International Building Code. Included in the code is the International Rehabilitation Code covering residential construction.

Professional Remodeler teamed with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, NAHB Research Center and Remodelors Council of NAHB, and the State of New Jersey to demonstrate HUD’s Nationally Applicable Recommended Rehabilitation Provisions (NARRP). That project, Model reMODEL 1998, proved that the NARRP saved money--both for remodelers and for consumers.

At the same time, officials in New Jersey were working to incorporate NARRP into the national code. Late last year, ICBO accepted NARRP as Appendix K in the IRC. With the release of the new codes, many local building departments are reviewing them for local adoption. According to ICBO, these codes provide "the first single family of codes adopted from coast to coast."

In addition to the IRC, ICBO has released:


  • International Electrical Code

  • International Energy Conservation Code

  • International Fire Code

  • International Fuel Gas Code

  • International Mechanical Code

  • International Plumbing Code

  • International Private Sewage Disposal Code

  • International Property Maintenance Code

  • International Zoning Code

    These codes are part of a comprehensive set of model codes regulating all aspects of building design and construction. "For the first time, these codes bring national consistency and economy to code enforcement and code compliance," says Roy Fewell, ICBO’s vice-president of public policy. ICBO has put together "Top 10 Advantages of the International Codes":

    1) The 2000 IRC is part of a family of International Codes designed to work together for use nationwide.

    2) The International Code family is a natural transition from current local and regional codes, retaining their best aspects and using their established formatting.

    3) The Codes are performance-oriented to stimulate economic development through innovative design and construction standards and to encourage new materials and new construction technologies.

    4) Using the Codes will save builders and remodelers time and money now spent complying with regional codes.

    5) It will be easier to produce products and services that will be accepted across state boundaries.

    6) The Code family was developed and will be improved through a national consensus process.

    7) The Code family is endorsed by the AIA, NAHB, FEMA and others.

    8) The Codes ensure that individual states are not out of step with other states with which they do business, helping builders who do business nationwide.

    9) The Codes ease the burden of code maintenance for local and regional jurisdictions that use amended versions of existing codes.

    10) ICBO is nationally recognized through ICC to conduct education and certification nationwide.

    Rod Sutton is the Editor-in-Chief for Professional Remodler. Please email him with any comments or questions regarding his column.

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