BCAB #1506 - Occupancy in Public Corridor, Sentences 3.3.1.4.(1) & 3.3.1.9.(5)

May 17, 2000

BCAB #1506

Re: Occupancy in Public Corridor, Sentences 3.3.1.4.(1) & 3.3.1.9.(5)

Project Description

A four storey multiple residential building (fully sprinklered) is served by public corridors. A lounge/waiting area, intended to be an integral part of the public corridor system, is adjacent to the egress path of the public corridor and is separated from the corridor by pony walls. The lounge/waiting area is less than 18 square meters and is intended to be typically furnished with couches, chairs and a television set. It is not intended that large amounts of combustibles would be stored in this area.

Reason for Appeal

Sentence 3.3.1.4.(1) requires that a public corridor be separated from the remainder of the building by a fire separation having a fire resistance rating of not less than 1 hour.

Appellant's Position

The lounge/waiting area is separated from the public corridor by pony walls, which will ensure the required egress width of the corridor is maintained. The amount of combustibles within the area will be limited. The corridor and lounge areas are protected with quick response sprinkler heads, smoke detection and the benefit of 24 hour professional staff on site.

The benefits of sprinkler protection are recognized for health care facilities where no fire separation is required in this situation for sprinklered hospitals or care homes.

Building Official's Position

The Building Official considers the lounge/waiting area as being “the remainder of the building” and therefore is required to be separated from the public corridor by a rated fire separation.

Appeal Board Decision #1506

Update: This decision is superseded by Appeal #1582 (2003/06/20).

Original decision: It is the determination of the Board that the lounge/waiting area is an occupancy in the corridor and complies with Sentence 3.3.1.9.(5) because it does not obstruct the required corridor width. The corridor containing the lounge/waiting room occupancy is separated from the remainder of the building as required by Sentence 3.3.1.4.(1).

George R. Humphrey, Chair