Posted in Architecture | Codes & Regulations | Current Events by Steven M. Beattie, RLA (Senior Project Manager) on May 16, 2013
Ever since I received classroom instruction at West Virginia University in the mid-1990s, accessibility has been a key component to my design process. Of course, back then we merely worried about the basics by providing ramps, curb cuts, and accessible parking spaces. Today, accessibility is a complicated, multi-level set of regulations and design guidelines that reach into every aspect of our society and daily lives – as they should. Over the years, I was guilty of questioning the regulatory guidance and why we needed to provide such a comprehensive approach which complicated design, sometimes limited the final design, and absolutely increased construction costs.
Today, I’m proud to say that I fully embrace accessibility, and make it the very first priority on any site design. In addition to the comprehensive checks and balances now in place to ensure accessibility that force compliance, I have witnessed over the years all types of people struggle in some of the same places I designed. Additionally, you can learn a lot when you have two young children and a stroller to push around. It was these experiences that have me now incorporating Universal Design Principles, as accessibility guidelines truly help all users, no matter your physical or cognitive ability.Comments (1) | Permalink |
Posted in Building Systems | Codes & Regulations | Energy Conservation by Steven M. Beattie, RLA (Senior Project Manager) on February 8, 2012
Don’t buy your 2012 International Code Council (ICC) books just yet. It seems that the Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code Review and Advisory Council recommended that the state not adopt the 2012 I-Codes according to Engineering News-Record’s (ENR) January 30, 2012 edition. You may remember all the uproar concerning the automatic passage of the 2009 code with its residential sprinkler mandate caused some big changes in Pennsylvania. House Bill 377 of 2011 was passed, which requires a 2/3’s vote from the Review and Advisory Council in order to update the statewide building code during each code cycle.No comments yet | Permalink |
Posted in Codes & Regulations | Municipal Services by Steven M. Beattie, RLA (Senior Project Manager) on January 9, 2012
With the New Year usually come new laws. Finally, a highly anticipated regulatory revision takes place in 2012, which will likely lower the cost of doing business for many local governments, municipal authorities and school districts. It’s an adjustment of limits for advertisement requirements for bids in Pennsylvania.
Act 84 of 2011, effective January 1, will increase the minimum dollar amount to advertise and seek bids for purchases and contracts from the current threshold of $10,000 to $18,500. In addition to increasing the current bid threshold, Act 84 will makes changes to the minimum amount necessary to seek telephone quotes for purchases and contracts to between $10,000 and $18,500. Any purchase a local government, municipal authority or school district makes that costs less than $10,000 will not be subject to the state’s bidding and advertising requirements. Smartly these minimum bid amounts will be adjusted annually based on changes in the Consumer Price Index. The PA Department of Labor and Industry will issue an annual change to the minimum bid amounts by January 1 of each year.Comments (2) | Permalink |