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Mayor Vincent C. Gray Announces Plan to Introduce New Construction Codes


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(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Mayor Vincent C. Gray today announced that the District of Columbia will be introducing new Construction Codes by March 1, 2013. The updated Construction Codes will keep the District at the national forefront of sustainable building practices for all new and renovated residential and commercial buildings.

The District’s Construction Codes incorporate most of the model codes issued every three years by the International Code Council (ICC). The District currently uses the 2006 ICC Codes, but will now leapfrog over the 2009 ICC Codes to review and adopt the 2012 ICC Codes.

“By adopting the most recent ICC Codes, the District will be a national leader in requiring the most modern and sustainable building practices,” Mayor Gray said. “The adoption of new construction codes, in conjunction with implementation of the Green Building Act, will ensure that the District remains on the cutting edge of ‘green’ building practices.”

The adoption of the District’s Construction Codes was completed by the Mayor-appointed Construction Codes Coordinating Board, which is housed within the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA).

“The Mayor’s decision to leapfrog to the 2012 ICC Codes is a very bold move,” said DCRA Director Nicholas Majett. “By setting a March 1, 2013 timeline, the Mayor has made very clear that we must move forward expeditiously to meet his vision of sustainable building practices in the District.”

“By moving quickly to adopt the very latest building codes, the Mayor and DCRA are taking a significant step to make our city more efficient and competitive,” said District Department of the Environment Director Christophe A.G. Tulou. “We are a heavily urban environment and will not be a truly sustainable city until we maximize the efficiency and healthfulness of our buildings. We look forward to working with DCRA and the building industry to put these codes into practice.”

The 2012 ICC Codes will be reviewed and amended by the Construction Codes Coordinating Board through regular meetings that are open to the public. The new District Construction Codes will be published as a proposed rulemaking and then submitted for review by the D.C. Council before they can become effective.
The 2012 ICC Codes will consist of the International Green Code, the International Energy Conservation Code, the International Building Code, the International Residential Code, the International Property Maintenance Code, the International Fire Code, the International Existing Building Code, the International Mechanical Code, the International Fuel Gas Code, the International Plumbing Code, and the National Electrical Code.

Today’s announcement comes as the Mayor’s Sustainable DC planning process is well underway (details at www.sustainable.dc.gov) and as the District was recently recognized by the U.S. Green Building Council as having many more square feet of LEED-certified green buildings per capita than any other state. In addition, the report found that District has more absolute square footage of LEED-certified buildings than five other states in the Top 10 for per-capita LEED-certified space – Colorado, Washington, Maryland, Massachusetts and Minnesota – despite each of those states having much larger populations than the District.