Last edited 25 Nov 2020

International Existing Building Code (IEBC)

Building codes are regulations that set out the standards to which buildings and other structures must conform. The International Existing Building Code (IEBC) is a code established in the US by the International Code Council (ICC) and applied by most of the country’s jurisdictions as well as in some other countries internationally, (sometimes amended to reflect local conditions and legislation).

The sets out requirements for repairs, alterations and additions to existing buildings and structures. It applies to work on buildings and structures that were constructed before the introduction of the building code requirements in 2000.

In many cases, the cost of works that would be required to bring a building up to current compliance levels can be prohibitively high. The code provides three options that allow a controlled departure from full compliance with the codes dealing with new construction while at the same time maintaining basic standards for structural performance, fire prevention and other health and safety issues.

The main options provided by the code:

Option 1: Work shall be done in accordance with a Prescriptive Compliance Method. This follows provisions included in the IBC such as the following requirements:

Option 2: Work shall be done in accordance with a Work Area Compliance Method. This is the most flexible of the three options since specific code provisions are triggered only if the scale and level of work warrant them.

Option 3: Performance method. This is the least used of the three options. It provides the design team with a method of scoring the existing safety conditions of a building. Improvements must then be undertaken to improve the score to an acceptable level.

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