Code Approvals

Written by Nicholas Kamuda
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For any building project, the architects and builders must usually go through a rigorous process of obtaining the necessary code approvals before building. The details of the process vary depending on the capacity of the building, whether or not it is a public or private building, and whether or not it's residential, industrial, or commercial. In recent years, as sustainable construction and green building receives government mandates, the different kinds of code approvals that builders must qualify for is evolving as well.

Meeting the building codes is usually just a matter of the building being structurally sound and not damaging to the environment. In many cases, building inspectors will look at plans and materials and be able to authorize building, pending further inspections once the structure is in place. Different parts of the country may have different code approvals systems, and may require different fees, reports, or requirements for fire safety, insulation, and the like.

Meeting Contemporary Code Approvals

Modern building systems, such as ICFs and SIPs (insulated concrete forms and structural insulated panels) usually need to be approved by the authorities before use in a building. In many cases, the manufacturer of such products can furnish builders and architects with information regarding ways to obtain code approval, or may have their products pre-approved, provided those products are used according to specifications.

Some builders may need to surpass standard codes and qualify for status as a green, or energy-efficient, building. Green buildings must meet intense standards in the areas of energy consumption, efficiency, waste processing, and other areas. Many of the programs that provide incentives for building green are in place in California and other progressive areas of the country, though the number of such programs is growing rapidly.

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