BCAB #1652 - Public Access to Water Closets, Sentence

September 17, 2008

BCAB #1652

Re: Public Access to Water Closets, Sentence

Project Description

The subject building is a two storey, 740 m2 in building area, and is a single suite classified as Group D Business and Personal Services major occupancy.

Washrooms for the use of the public are in two locations, a single unisex toilet room with access for persons with disabilities on the first storey, and multi stalled washrooms on the second storey.

For security and surveillance reasons, the public wishing to use the second storey washrooms may need to be escorted by staff.

Reason for Apeal

Sentence states: In a building whose floor area is more than 600 m2 and that includes one or more individual tenant spaces for business and personal services occupancy or mercantile occupancy, water closets shall be located so that they are accessible to the public when the building is occupied.

NOTE: In this sentence the word accessible is not a defined term.

Appellant’s Position

The appellant contends that the public does have access to the water closets. The Code does not specify that this access cannot be under the supervision of the building’s staff.

Building Official's Position
The Building Official, contends that the need to request access to the water closets does not comply with the intent of the Code, particularly when access can be denied by staff.

Appeal Board Decision #1652

It is the determination of the Board that the washroom facilities provided for this building are accessible to the public.

George Humphrey, Chair