BCAB #1393 - Access to Second Storey for Disabled Persons, Clause

May 17, 1995

BCAB #1393

Re: Access to Second Storey for Disabled Persons, Clause

Project Description

The project in question is warehouse and office structure comprised of two buildings separated by a 4 hour firewall. The larger building is the storage warehouse while the smaller building is contains showroom and sales areas on the ground floor and offices on the second storey. Both storeys of the smaller building are 416 square metres in area.

Reason for Appeal

Section 3.7, Building Requirements for Persons with Disabilities, requires access for disabled persons to all storeys of buildings except as exempted in Sentence One such exemption is Clause which says, in part, access is not required to a second storey of less than 600 m2 unless that storey contains facilities integral with the principal function of the building.

Appellant's Position

The appellant contends that the second storey office is not integral to the principle function of the building and, because it is less than 600 m2, is not required to be accessible to persons with disabilities. The structure houses three separate branches of the parent company which, until construction of this building, operated from separate locations. The second storey is the administration and marketing office while the remainder houses storage, display and trade sales. The contention is that administration and marketing are not integral with the principle function of the building but are merely convenient neighbours.

Building Official's Position

The building official maintains that the design of the building, with doors and stairs providing internal access between all parts of the building, indicates the areas are complementary. If an ambulatory person is able to access all these areas so should persons with disabilities. The second floor, although less than 600 m2, is required to accessible because it seems to be integral with the remainder of the building.

Appeal Board Decision #1393

Based on the specific details of this project regarding the use of the various parts of the building the Board considers access for persons with disabilities to the second floor is not required.

George R. Humphrey, Chair