Significant changes to the 2018 International Building Code
The 2018 Significant Changes guides are available for the International Building, Residential, Fire, Plumbing, Mechanical and Fuel Gas Codes. This valuable series can help any code user save time by zeroing in on the most critical changes in the 2018 International Codes. The Code Council’s technical experts provide summaries, analysis and graphics for these changes making them clear and easy to understand.
2018 International Building Code
A clarification to Section 406.3 (Regulation of Private Garages) states that parking structures that meet the definition of private garages are now permitted to comply with the provisions for public parking garages as an alternative approach.
A private garage has historically been limited by the size of the garage facility, with an absolute limit of 3,000 square feet. In the 2015 IBC, a new definition was introduced describing a private garage as a building or portion of a building where motor vehicles used by the tenants of the building or buildings on the premises are stored or kept, without any limitation on floor area. As a result, large parking structures used exclusively for use of the tenants would qualify as private parking garages and be subject to the fire separation and Group U classification criteria of Section 406.3. An allowance has now been provided such that private garages are permitted to comply with the provisions for public parking garages as an alternative approach.
Private garages, as regulated by Section 406.3, are required to be classified as Group U occupancies and are limited to 1,000 square feet of floor area. Multiple garages are permitted in the same building, but only where separated by minimum 1-hour fire barriers and/or horizontal assemblies. Often there are conditions under which a much larger Group S-2 open or enclosed parking structure is intended to be limited for use only by the building’s tenants. The code now allows those parking structures that meet the definition of private garage to be designed and constructed under the provisions for public garages.
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