The 2014 NYC Construction Codes are now available.
The 2014 NYC Construction Codes are now available.

Communities as Critical Systems: Building Resiliently

Policy and Advocacy by • 09/03

On 08.20.14, Enterprise Community Partners held a resilience roundtable on ways to incorporate resilience measures into its Green Communities Criteria. Enterprise Green Communities aligns affordable housing investment strategies with environmentally responsible building practices, and the Green Communities Criteria were developed to provide a framework for building green, affordable housing developments. Developments must fulfill an adequate number of the criteria in order to receive Green Communities certification. After 10 years of successful implementation, Enterprise is updating the list of criteria with resilient building methods. For the New York region, the focus is on flooding issues.

Enterprise brought together a group of experts to suggest standards for the updated criteria. After opening remarks by Enterprise VP & Market Leader Judith Kende and a thorough introduction to the Green Communities Criteria by Enterprise Program Officer Michelle Mulcahy, there were keynote introductory remakrs by Alex Wilson of Resilient Design and AIANY Executive Director Rick Bell, FAIA. An overview of the resilience work of Enterprise Community Partners was followed by participants breaking into four work groups. These were based on the criteria’s four existing categories: Location and Neighborhood Fabric + Site Improvements, Materials Beneficial to the Environment and Healthy Living Environment, Integrative Design and Operations & Maintenance, and Water Conservation and Energy Efficiency. Each group was encouraged to consider their assigned area in context and to think holistically about approaches to resiliently.

The entire group reconvened, and the conversation focused on the role of the community in preparing for resiliency. Occupants were considered a critical system; everyone in the building must be aware of evacuation and return plans. Developments must also commission input from their communities. If residents are invested and prepared, buildings are more resilient.

Look for the updated Green Communities Criteria to be released next year.

Pulse Points

  • The AIA joined the International Code Council (ICC), ASHRAE, the Illumination Engineering Society of North America (IES), and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) in signing a memorandum to collaborate on the development of Standard 189.1, the International Green Construction Code and the LEED green building program. This agreement aims to align the LEED program with the new code to ensure streamlined regulatory and above-code options, coordinating building codes with LEED certification. The organizations and their development processes will remain separate, but the three systems will effectively become one. Read the press release here.
  • The 2014 NYC Construction Codes are now available online. Review the new codes here. The NYC Department of Buildings (DOB) has also added more training sessions. Sign up here. The 2014 NYC Construction Codes are scheduled to go into effect on October 1, 2014. The short notice, however, has made it difficult for architects to properly prepare. AIANY, along with BOMA New York, BTEA, NYSAFAH, NYBC, and REBNY, signed a letter to Commissioner Rick Chandler to ask DOB to delay the effective date of the 2014 Construction Codes until three months after Codes have been printed, or January 1, 2015. The additional time will only help to ensure compliance. Read the letter here.
  • NYC Department of Transportation, AIANY, Friends of LaGuardia Park, Manhattan Community Board 2, and artist Chris Janney present “Sonic Forest – Civic Spirit: Civic Vision,” on view in LaGuardia Park across the street from the Center for Architecture from Friday 09.05.14 to Thursday 09.11.14. The interactive installation celebrates community advocacy by transforming public spaces and engaging the public through sound and visual effects. Read more about it here.

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