August 11, 2010

The Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) announced that the organization will cease to license and support MasterFormat 95 as of December 31, 2009.

The CSI Board of Directors voted to stop licensing and supporting MasterFormat 95 during its June 16, 2009, meeting at the CSI Annual Convention in Indianapolis.

"Now that the new edition has been widely accepted by the industry, we felt it was time to complete the transition to MasterFormat™ 2004," said CSI Executive Director and CEO Walter Marlowe, P.E., CSI, CAE. "As a result, CSI and Construction Specifications Canada (CSC) will no longer support MasterFormat 95 after December 31, 2009."

In 2004, CSI and CSC introduced the most significant updates to MasterFormat since the standard was introduced in the 1960s. To meet the industry's changing needs, MasterFormat 2004 edition features an expanded structure, increasing the number of divisions from 16 to 50, and replaces the five-digit system from previous editions with a six-digit system. It was expanded to accommodate the many new technologies and building practices introduced since its inception and to provide more complete coverage for all types of construction projects.

MasterFormat has long been recognized as a standard in the construction industry to organize project manuals and detailed cost information, and to relate drawing notes to specifications. It aids project delivery by facilitating communication among architects, engineers, specifiers, contractors, suppliers and other consultants, which helps them meet building owners' requirements, timelines and budgets. By fostering fuller and more detailed construction specifications, MasterFormat is designed to reduce costly changes or delays in projects due to incomplete, misplaced or missing information.

Many high-profile public agencies, companies, A/E firms, consultants and others have made the switch to the latest edition of MasterFormat, but there are still organizations that have not made the transition. Using two different versions of MasterFormat makes it difficult to correctly classify work results and communicate project information. The continued use of MasterFormat 95 and earlier versions also hinders industry standardization and works contrary to interoperability.

CSI and CSC are working with the MasterFormat Sponsors to communicate the decision to the industry, promote the benefits of using the latest version through a communication campaign and transition their products that use MasterFormat.

For more information on MasterFormat, please visit http://www.masterformat.com/. MasterFormat 2004 edition is available for purchase on the Web site. Access to real-time updates, a transition guide and a tool to convert MasterFormat 95 numbers to the latest version also are available.

         
 

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