The National Building Code of Canada 2015 (NBC), published by NRC and developed by the Canadian Commission on Building and Fire Codes, sets out technical provisions for the design and construction of new buildings. It also applies to the alteration, change of use and demolition of existing buildings. Over 360 technical changes have been incorporated in this new edition.
Thirty-four changes to the NBC and eight changes to the National Fire Code 2015 (NFC) now permit construction of six-storey buildings using combustible construction. As a result, additional protection measures have been added to address the risk of injury due to fire and structural collapse in the finished building as well as during construction. Special attention was also given to protect buildings during construction when fire protection features are not yet in place.
The many changes in the 2015 edition also include updates to accessibility and associated design requirements in Part 3, aligning Code requirements with the current knowledge on accessibility. Hazard values for seismic design in Part 4 and Appendix C have been updated and design exemptions withdrawn so that all buildings in Canada will now be designed for earthquake forces regardless of the level of hazard. Apparent Sound Transmission Class (ASTC) is introduced in Part 5 to assess compliance with minimum airborne sound requirements between dwelling units. There are also significant changes to Part 9, housing and small buildings, with over half impacting stairs, ramps, handrails and guards. A key change in the NBC 2015 increases the run dimension of a step inside the house, a change which aims to reduce fall incidences and aligns NBC requirements with international codes.
The NBC 2015 is divided into two Volumes and has been re-organized to consolidate relevant information. Each Part now contains the Prescriptive Requirements, followed by the related (appendix) Notes. Parts 1 to 8 are found in Volume 1 and Part 9 now forms Volume 2.
The NBC 2015 complements the National Fire Code of Canada 2015, and both are indispensable for officials, educators and construction professionals.
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