BCAB #1665 - Fire Separation of Repair Garage, Article 3.3.5.5.

February 18, 2010

BCAB #1665

Re: Fire Separation of Repair Garage, Article 3.3.5.5.

Project Description
The project in question is a horizontal and vertical addition to an existing automobile sales and service facility. The addition will create a building of about 666 square metres in building area with a small second storey of about 42.5 square metres above one of the new service bays. The addition increases the service area from three bays to five and increases the area of the showroom as well as providing new office, reception and parts areas.

Reason for Appeal
Article 3.3.5.5. requires a repair garage and any ancillary spaces serving it, including waiting rooms, reception rooms, tool and parts storage areas and supervisory office space, to be separated from other occupancies by a fire separation having a fire-resistance rating of not less than two hours. This requirement is intended to limit the probability of fire spread from the repair garage to other parts of the building.

Appellant’s Position
The appellant contends that the office area is less than 10% of the area of the building and should not be considered an occupancy from which the repair garage needs to be separated.

Building Official's Position
The building official maintains that the area of the offices is not relevant. Article 3.3.5.5. requires a repair garage to be separated from other occupancies by a two hour fire separation. Only some areas of the building can be considered associated with the repair garage and the remainder must be separated by the two hour fire separation.

Appeal Board Decision #1665
It is the determination of the Board that the repair garage must be separated from the remainder of the building, including the showroom and associated offices, in accordance with Article 3.3.5.5.

George Humphrey, Chair