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Few projects and properties are being built beyond code

Codes and Standards

Few projects and properties are being built beyond code

AIA study says clients believe building to code can ensure resilience; architects disagree.

By Peter Fabris, Contributing Editor | July 29, 2022
Code architecture
Courtesy Pexels.

Clients and architects disagree on how well building to code provides resilience, according to a recent report by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) in partnership with Owens Corning.

Resiliency in the Built Environment assesses the current state and best practices for increasing resiliency and sustainability in design and construction.  Clients believe building to code is sufficient to ensure resilience, but architects disagree with that notion, the report says. It’s not surprising then, that few projects and properties are reported as being built beyond code.

The report also provides insights into how to best improve resiliency and sustainability from design through construction with input from three key audiences: architects, general contractors, and clients, including owners and developers. One key finding: “Stronger building codes and standards will drive resiliency, but so will making the business case to clients.”

The report’s areas of focus include:

  • The role of building codes, clients’ expectations, and specification requirements that drive resiliency in design.
  • How is resiliency reinforced through practices like material replacement strategy and resilient design strategies?
  • Where are the biggest gaps in expertise about resiliency in construction, and how can they be filled?
  • How do long-term and short-term incentives determine the level of resiliency for a given project?
  •  How is resiliency considered when selecting building products and materials?
  •  Which hazards and risks are most commonly taken into account in design?

The report is available for free at the AIA website.

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