NYC’s Comprehensive New Building Code Includes VT
Vertical-transportation (VT) equipment including elevators, escalators, moving walks and dumbwaiters is part of Int. No. 2261-A, a bill passed on October 7 that NYC’s Department of Buildings (DoB) describes as containing “sweeping updates to NYC construction and building regulations.” With more than 600 major updates and thousands of smaller changes, the revisions are the first “holistic update to the entire set of NYC Administrative, Pluming, Building, Mechanical and Fuel Gas Codes since 2014,” DoB states. Drafted by technical committees composed of engineers, architects, attorneys, planners, tradespeople, representatives of various industries and utilities, the DoB and many other stakeholders, revision highlights include:
- Emergency-response enhancements that increase minimum dimensions for an elevator emergency hatch and expand the number of high rises that require emergency voice-communication systems
- Clear compliance criteria for elevator systems to ensure greater accessibility and usability for building occupants with physical or mental disabilities
- A requirement for door-lock monitoring for all Limited Use/Limited Application lifts to minimize the risk of people and objects becoming stuck
- A requirement for the same “elevator-in-readiness” to serve all floors to minimize building evacuation times during emergencies
- An amendment of inspection timeframes for elevators and boilers to bring them back into service faster
Most code requirements of the updated bill go into effect next year, with some taking effect on January 1, 2022.