CODES

ADOPTS WITH AMENDMENTS:

International Existing Building Code 2012 (IEBC 2012)

Copyright

Preface

Chapter 1 Administration

Chapter 2 Definitions

Chapter 3 Compliance Methods

Chapter 4 Prescriptive Compliance Method

Chapter 5 Classification of Work

Chapter 6 Repairs

Chapter 7 Alterations—Level 1

Chapter 8 Alterations—Level 2

Chapter 9 Alterations—Level 3

Chapter 10 Change of Occupancy

Chapter 11 Additions

Chapter 12 Historic Buildings

Chapter 13 Relocated or Moved Buildings

Chapter 14 Performance Compliance Methods

Chapter 15 Construction Safeguards

Chapter 16 Referenced Standards

Chapter 17 Retrofit Requirements

Appendix A Guidelines for the Seismic Retrofit of Existing Buildings

Chapter A1 Seismic Strengthening Provisions for Unreinforced Masonry Bearing Wall Buildings

Chapter A2 Earthquake Hazard Reduction in Existing Reinforced Concrete and Reinforced Masonry Wall Buildings With Flexible Diaphragms

Chapter A3 Prescriptive Provisions for Seismic Strengthening of Cripple Walls and Sill Plate Anchorage of Light, Wood-Frame Residential Buildings

Chapter A4 Earthquake Risk Reduction in Wood-Frame Residential Buildings With Soft, Weak or Open Front Walls

Chapter A5 Earthquake Hazard Reduction in Existing Concrete Buildings

Chapter A6 Referenced Standards

Appendix B Supplementary Accessibility Requirements for Existing Buildings and Facilities

Resource a Guidelines on Fire Ratings of Archaic Materials and Assemblies

The Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code, Part II, Rehabilitation, may be cited as the “Virginia Rehabilitation Code,” or as the “VRC.”
Chapters 2–16 of the 2012 International Existing Building Code, published by the International Code Council, Inc., are adopted and incorporated by reference to be an enforceable part of the VRC. The term “IEBC” means the 2012 International Existing Building Code, published by the International Code Council, Inc. Any codes and standards referenced in the IEBC are also considered to be part of the incorporation by reference, except that such codes and standards are used only to the prescribed extent of each such reference.
A dual numbering system is used in the VRC to correlate the numbering system of the Virginia Administrative Code with the numbering system of the IEBC. IEBC numbering system designations are provided in the catch-lines of the Virginia Administrative Code sections and cross references between sections or chapters of the VRC use only the IEBC numbering system designations. The term “chapter” is used in the context of the numbering system of the IEBC and may mean a chapter in the VRC, a chapter in the IEBC or a chapter in a referenced code or standard, depending on the context of the use of the term. The term “chapter” is not used to designate a chapter of the Virginia Administrative Code, unless clearly indicated.
The VRC is comprised of the combination of (i) the provisions of Chapter 1, Administration, which are established herein, (ii) Chapters 2–16 of the IEBC, which are incorporated by reference in Section 101.2, and (iii) the changes to the text of the incorporated chapters of the IEBC that are specifically identified, including any new chapters added. The terminology “changes to the text of the incorporated chapters of the IEBC that are specifically identified, including any new chapters added” shall also be referred to as the “state amendments to the IEBC.” Such state amendments to the IEBC are set out using corresponding chapter and section numbers of the IEBC numbering system. In addition, since Chapter 1 of the IEBC is not incorporated as part of the VRC, any reference to a provision of Chapter 1 of the IEBC in the provisions of Chapters 2–16 of the IEBC is generally invalid. However, where the purpose of such a reference would clearly correspond to a provision of Chapter 1 established herein, then the reference may be construed to be a valid reference to such corresponding Chapter 1 provision.
The term “this code,” or “ the code,” where used in the provisions of Chapter 1, in Chapters 2–16 of the IEBC, or in the state amendments to the IEBC, means the VRC, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise. The term “this code,” or “the code,” where used in a code or standard referenced in the IEBC, means that code or standard, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise. The term “USBC” where used in this code, means the Virginia Construction Code, or VCC, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise. In addition, where the phrase “of the International Building Code under which the building was constructed” is used in the IEBC, it shall be construed to mean the USBC or other code that was in effect when the building was built. Further, the use of notes in Chapter 1 is to provide information only and shall not be construed as changing the meaning of any code provision. Notes in the IEBC, in the codes and standards referenced in the IEBC and in the state amendments to the IEBC, may modify the content of a related provision and shall be considered to be a valid part of the provision, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

The provisions of this code shall be used as follows:

  1. The provisions of Chapter 1 of this code supersede any provisions of Chapters 2–16 of the IEBC that address the same subject matter and impose differing requirements.
  2. The provisions of Chapter 1 of this code supersede any provisions of the codes and standards referenced in the IEBC that address the same subject matter and impose differing requirements.
  3. The state amendments to the IEBC supersede any provisions of Chapters 2–16 of the IEBC and that address the same subject matter and impose differing requirements.
  4. The state amendments to the IEBC supersede any provisions of the codes and standards referenced in the IEBC that address the same subject matter and impose differing requirements.
  5. The provisions of Chapters 2–16 of the IEBC supersede any provisions of the codes and standards referenced in the IEBC that address the same subject matter and impose differing requirements.

The provisions of Chapter 1 establish administrative requirements, which include but are not limited to provisions relating to the scope and enforcement of the code. Any provisions of Chapters 2–16 of the IEBC or any provisions of the codes and standards referenced in the IEBC that address the same subject matter to a lesser or greater extent are deleted and replaced by the provisions of Chapter 1. Further, any administrative requirements contained in the state amendments to the IEBC shall be given the same precedence as the provisions of Chapter 1. Notwith-standing the above, where administrative requirements of Chapters 2–16 of the IEBC or of the codes and standards referenced in the IEBC are specifically identified as valid administrative requirements in Chapter 1 of this code or in the state amendments to the IEBC, then such requirements are not deleted and replaced.

Note: The purpose of this provision is to eliminate overlap, conflicts and duplication by providing a single standard for administrative, procedural and enforcement requirements of this code.

The definitions of terms used in this code are contained in Chapter 2 along with specific provisions addressing the use of definitions. Terms may be defined in other chapters or provisions of the code and such definitions are also valid.

In accordance with Section 36-99.01 of the Code of Virginia, the General Assembly of Virginia has declared that (i) there is an urgent need to improve the housing conditions of low and moderate income individuals and families, many of whom live in substandard housing, particularly in the older cities of the Commonwealth; (ii) there are large numbers of older residential buildings in the Common wealth, both occupied and vacant, which are in urgent need of rehabilitation and must be rehabilitated if the state’s citizens are to be housed in decent, sound, and sanitary conditions; and (iii) the application of those building code requirements currently in force to housing rehabilitation has sometimes led to the imposition of costly and time-consuming requirements that result in a significant reduction in the amount of rehabilitation activity taking place.

The General Assembly further declares that (i) there is an urgent need to improve the existing condition of many of the Commonwealth’s stock of commercial properties, particularly in older cities; (ii) there are large numbers of older commercial buildings in the Commonwealth, both occupied and vacant, that are in urgent need of rehabilitation and that must be rehabilitated if the citizens of the Commonwealth are to be provided with decent, sound and sanitary work spaces; and (iii) the application of the existing building code to such rehabilitation has sometimes led to the imposition of costly and time-consuming requirements that result in a significant reduction in the amount of rehabilitation activity taking place.

The provisions of this code shall control the rehabilitation, reconstruction, alteration, repair, and change of occupancy of existing buildings and structures in occupancies other than Group R-5 and shall be permitted to be used as an alternative to compliance with the VCC for additions to buildings in any occupancy classification and for reconstruction, alteration or repair in Group R-5 occupancies.

Exception:

The use of this code shall not be permitted for change of occupancy involving Group I-2 or I-3.

All administrative provisions of the VCC, including but not limited to, requirements for permits, inspections and approvals by the local building department, provisions for appeals from decisions of the local building department and the issuance of modifications, are applicable to the use of this code, except where this code sets out differing requirements. Where there is a conflict between a general requirement and a specific requirement in the IEBC, the specific requirement shall govern.
Compliance with the provisions of a nationally recognized performance code when approved as a modification shall be considered to constitute compliance with this code. All documents submitted as part of such consideration shall be retained in the permanent records of the local building department.
When requested by a prospective permit applicant or when determined necessary by the code official, the code official shall meet with the prospective permit applicant prior to the application for a permit to discuss plans for the proposed work or change of occupancy in order to establish the specific applicability of the provisions of this code.

No change of occupancy shall be made in any structure when the current USBC requires a greater degree of accessibility, structural strength, fire protection, means of egress, ventilation, or sanitation. When such a greater degree is required, the owner or the owner’s agent shall make written application to the local building department for a new certificate of occupancy and shall obtain the new certificate of occupancy prior to the new use of the structure.

When impractical to achieve compliance with this code for the new occupancy classification, the building official shall consider modifications upon application and as provided for in Section 106.3 of the VCC.

In accordance with Section 103.7 of the VCC, the local building department shall enforce the provisions of Section 1701 that require certain existing buildings to be retrofitted with fire protection systems and other safety equipment. Retroactive fire protection system requirements contained in the International Fire Code shall not be applicable unless required for compliance with the provisions of Section 1701.
The following criteria for nonrequired equipment is in accordance with Section 36-103 of the Code of Virginia. Building owners may elect to install partial or full fire alarms or other safety equipment that was not required by the edition of the VCC in effect at the time a building was constructed without meeting current requirements of the code, provided the installation does not create a hazardous condition. Permits for installation shall be obtained in accordance with the VCC. In addition, as a requirement of this code, when such nonrequired equipment is to be installed, the building official shall notify the appropriate fire official or fire chief.
When a nonrequired fire protection system is to be reduced in function or discontinued, it shall be done in such a manner so as not to create a false sense of protection. Generally, in such cases, any features visible from interior areas shall be removed, such as sprinkler heads, smoke detectors, or alarm panels or devices, but any wiring or piping hidden within the construction of the building may remain. Approval of the proposed method of reduction or discontinuance shall be obtained from the building official.

Upon the replacement or new installation of any fuel-burning appliances or equipment in existing buildings, an inspection or inspections shall be conducted to ensure that the connected vent or chimney systems comply with the following:

  1. Vent or chimney systems are sized in accordance with either the International Residential Code, the International Mechanical Code, or the International Fuel Gas Code, depending on which is applicable based on the fuel source and the occupancy classification of the structure.
  2. Vent or chimney systems are clean, free of any obstruction or blockages, defects, or deterioration and are in operable condition.

    Where not inspected by the local building department, persons performing such changes or installations shall certify to the building official that the requirements of Items 1 and 2 of this section are met.

Any requirements of the IEBC requiring the maintenance of existing buildings or structures are invalid.

Note: Requirements for the maintenance of existing buildings and structures and for unsafe conditions are contained in Part III of the USBC, known as the Virginia Maintenance Code.

Appendix A of the IEBC provides guidelines for the seismic retrofit of existing buildings. The use of this appendix is not mandatory but shall be permitted to be utilized at the option of an owner, the owner’s agent or the RDP involved in a rehabilitation project. However, in no case shall the use of Appendix A be construed to authorize the lowering of existing levels of health or safety in buildings or structures being rehabilitated.
Appendix B of the IEBC provides supplementary accessibility requirements for existing buildings and facilities. All applicable requirements of Appendix B shall be met in buildings and structures being rehabilitated.
Resource A of the IEBC provides guidelines for the evaluation of fire-resistance ratings of archaic materials and may be used in conjunction with rehabilitation projects.
Resources