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Posted By ASC, Friday, February 17, 2017

BLOG:  Insights to the National Institute of Building Sciences - 2017 Building Innovation Conference


By Paul Bertram, Expert Blogger


As 2017 year began, the National Institute of Building Science held its annual Building Innovation conference in Washington DC in January. Resilience was the one overarching theme that resonated in many of the sessions. Resilience, for the purpose, of this discussion, was presented as: How fast a building can rebound from extreme weather conditions.

Establishing a definition for Resilience falls into the same problematic categories of “Sustainability” and “Durability”. These terms seem to be interrelated and causing confusion in the industry.

In sessions related to building codes, ICC representatives expressed that resilience is already in the codes. They cited examples that included wind & snow loads, tornadic impacts, fire, seismic, and flooding. During this session, Resilience was defined as: the ability to prepare and plan for absorbing and recovery; or more successfully adapt to actual or potential adverse events. Key to this presentation was the reminder that building codes are the minimum level of compliance requirements.

In many of the presentations building code adoption was cited as an impediment for delivering High Performance resilient buildings because of the long code development improvement cycles and even longer adoption timelines. In relationship to increasing extreme weather conditions, this leaves buildings more vulnerable to expensive damage and insurance payout, let alone the social impacts.

The ICC compliance process is intended to construct safe, sustainable, affordable and resilient structures. Recently, the ICC Board directed staff to engage the stakeholders by announcing a "Call for Feedback" on any and all aspects of the ICC code development process. The next step in the process is the deadline for feedback, which...




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