BCAB #1561 - Seismic Importance Factor for Schools, Sentence

March 18, 2002

BCAB #1561

Re: Seismic Importance Factor for Schools, Sentence

Project Description

The subject is a three storey building located on a university campus and its intended occupancy is classrooms and administrative offices.

Reason for Appeal

Sentence states the seismic importance factor shall equal 1.3 for schools and 1.0 for all other buildings.

Appellant’s Position

The appellant contends for the purpose of the application of Sentence, a university classroom/office building should not be considered a school. The applicable importance factor should be 1.0.

Building Official's Position

The Building Official acknowledges that information provided by the National Research Council indicates the intent of Sentence may not have been to consider university buildings to be schools. However, if one is to use a dictionary definition (Canadian Oxford) a university is considered as a school. In the case of conflict, the Building official considers his role to apply what the Building Code says and not what it may have intended. The Building Official considers the applicable importance factor to be 1.3.

Appeal Board Decision #1561

It is the determination of the Board, based on National Building Code intent statements and confirmation from standing committee members and Canadian Codes Centre staff, that the applicable seismic importance factor for this university building is 1.0.

George Humphrey, Chair