CHAPTER 3
PRESCRIPTIVE COMPLIANCE METHOD


  • [B] SECTION 301
    GENERAL

    301.1 Scope.
    The provisions of this chapter shall control the alteration, repair, addition and change of occupancy of existing structures, including historic and moved structures as referenced in Section 101.5.1.

    Exception: Existing bleachers, grandstands and folding and telescopic seating shall comply with ICC 300-02.

    301.1.1 Compliance with other methods.
    Alterations, repairs, additions and changes of occupancy to existing structures shall comply with the provisions of this chapter or with one of the methods provided in Section 101.5.

    301.2 Building materials.
    Building materials shall comply with the requirements of this section.

    301.2.1 Existing materials.
    Materials already in use in a building in compliance with requirements or approvals in effect at the time of their erection or installation shall be permitted to remain in use unless determined by the code official to be dangerous to life, health or safety. Where such conditions are determined to be dangerous to life, health or safety, they shall be mitigated or made safe.

    301.2.2 New and replacement materials.
    Except as otherwise required or permitted by this code, materials permitted by the applicable code for new construction shall be used. Like materials shall be permitted for repairs and alterations, provided no hazard to life, health or property is created. Hazardous materials shall not be used where the code for new construction would not permit their use in buildings of similar occupancy, purpose and location.

    [B] SECTION 302
    ADDITIONS

    302.1 General.
    Additions to any building or structure shall comply with the requirements of the Florida Building Code, Building for new construction. Alterations to the existing building or structure shall be made to ensure that the existing building or structure together with the addition are no less conforming with the provisions of Florida Building Code, Building than the existing building or structure was prior to the addition. An existing building together with its additions shall comply with the height and area provisions of Chapter 5 of the Florida Building Code, Building.

    302.2 Flood hazard areas.
    For buildings and structures in flood hazard areas established in Section 1612.3 of the Florida Building Code, Building, any addition that constitutes substantial improvement of the existing structure, as defined in Section 1612.2 of the Florida Building Code, Building, shall comply with the flood design requirements for new construction, and all aspects of the existing structure shall be brought into compliance with the requirements for new construction for flood design. For buildings and structures in flood hazard areas established in Section 1612.3 of the Florida Building Code, Building, any additions that do not constitute substantial improvement or substantial damage of the existing structure, as defined in Section 1612.2 of the Florida Building Code, Building, are not required to comply with the flood design requirements for new construction.

    302.3 Existing structural elements carrying gravity load.
    Any existing gravity load-carrying structural element for which an addition and its related alterations cause an increase in design gravity load of more than 5 percent shall be strengthened, supplemented, replaced or otherwise altered as needed to carry the increased load required by the Florida Building Code, Building for new structures. Any existing gravity load-carrying structural element whose gravity load-carrying capacity is decreased shall be considered an altered element subject to the requirements of Section 303.3. Any existing element that will form part of the lateral load path for any part of the addition shall be considered an existing lateral load-carrying structural element subject to the requirements of Section 302.4.

    302.3.1 Design live load.
    Where the addition does not result in increased design live load, existing gravity load-carrying structural elements shall be permitted to be evaluated and designed for live loads approved prior to the addition. If the approved live load is less than that required by Section 1607 of the Florida Building Code, Building, the area designed for the nonconforming live load shall be posted with placards of approved design indicating the approved live load. Where the addition does result in increased design live load, the live load required by Section 1607 of the Florida Building Code, Building shall be used.

    302.4 Existing structural elements carrying lateral load.
    Where the addition is structurally independent of the existing structure, existing lateral load-carrying structural elements shall be permitted to remain unaltered. Where the addition is not structurally independent of the existing structure, the existing structure and its addition acting together as a single structure shall be shown to meet the requirements of Section 1609 of the Florida Building Code, Building.

    Exception: Any existing lateral load-carrying structural element whose demand-capacity ratio with the addition considered is no more than 10 percent greater than its demand-capacity ratio with the addition ignored shall be permitted to remain unaltered. For purposes of calculating demand-capacity ratios, the demand shall consider applicable load combinations with design lateral loads or forces in accordance with Section 1609 of the Florida Building Code, Building. For purposes of this exception, comparisons of demand-capacity ratios and calculation of design lateral loads, forces and capacities shall account for the cumulative effects of additions and alterations since original construction.

    302.4.1 Seismic.
    Reserved.

    [B] SECTION 303
    ALTERATIONS

    303.1 General.
    Except as provided by Section 301.2 or this section, alterations to any building or structure shall comply with the requirements of the Florida Building Code, Building for new construction. Alterations shall be such that the existing building or structure is no less conforming with the provisions of the Florida Building Code, Building than the existing building or structure was prior to the alteration.

    Exceptions:

    1. An existing stairway shall not be required to comply with the requirements of Section 1009 of the Florida Building Code, Building where the existing space and construction does not allow a reduction in pitch or slope.

    2. Handrails otherwise required to comply with Section 1009.12 of the Florida Building Code, Building shall not be required to comply with the requirements of Section 1012.6 of the Florida Building Code, Building regarding full extension of the handrails where such extensions would be hazardous due to plan configuration.

    303.2 Flood hazard areas.
    For buildings and structures in flood hazard areas established in Section 1612.3 of the Florida Building Code, Building, any alteration that constitutes substantial improvement of the existing structure, as defined in Section 1612.2 of the Florida Building Code, Building, shall comply with the flood design requirements for new construction, and all aspects of the existing structure shall be brought into compliance with the requirements for new construction for flood design. For buildings and structures in flood hazard areas established in Section 1612.3 of the Florida Building Code, Building, any alterations that do not constitute substantial improvement or substantial damage of the existing structure, as defined in Section 1612.2 of the Florida Building Code, Building, are not required to comply with the flood design requirements for new construction.

    303.3 Existing structural elements carrying gravity load.
    Any existing gravity load-carrying structural element for which an alteration causes an increase in design gravity load of more than 5 percent shall be strengthened, supplemented, replaced or otherwise altered as needed to carry the increased gravity load required by the Florida Building Code, Building for new structures. Any existing gravity load-carrying structural element whose gravity load-carrying capacity is decreased as part of the alteration shall be shown to have the capacity to resist the applicable design gravity loads required by the Florida Building Code, Building for new structures.

    303.3.1 Design live load.
    Where the alteration does not result in increased design live load, existing gravity load-carrying structural elements shall be permitted to be evaluated and designed for live loads approved prior to the alteration. If the approved live load is less than that required by Section 1607 of the Florida Building Code, Building , the area designed for the nonconforming live load shall be posted with placards of approved design indicating the approved live load. Where the alteration does result in increased design live load, the live load required by Section 1607 of the Florida Building Code, Building, shall be used.

    303.4 Existing structural elements carrying lateral load.
    Where the alteration increases design lateral loads in accordance with Section 1609 of the Florida Building Code, Building or where the alteration decreases the capacity of any existing lateral load-carrying structural element, the structure of the altered building or structure shall be shown to meet the requirements of Section 1609 Florida Building Code, Building.

    Exception: Any existing lateral load-carrying structural element whose demand-capacity ratio with the alteration considered is no more than 10 percent greater than its demand-capacity ratio with the alteration ignored shall be permitted to remain unaltered. For purposes of calculating demand-capacity ratios, the demand shall consider applicable load combinations with design lateral loads or forces in accordance with Section 1609 Florida Building Code, Building. For purposes of this exception, comparisons of demand-capacity ratios and calculation of design lateral loads, forces and capacities shall account for the cumulative effects of additions and alterations since original construction.

    303.4.1 Seismic.
    Reserved.

    303.5 Voluntary seismic improvements.
    Reserved.

    303.6 Means of egress capacity factors.
    Alterations to any existing building or structure shall not be subject to the egress width factors in Section 1005.1 of the Florida Building Code, Building for new construction in determining the minimum egress widths or the minimum number of exits in an existing building or structure. The minimum egress widths for the components of the means of egress shall be based on the means of egress width factors in the building code under which the building was constructed, and shall be considered as complying means of egress for any alteration if, in the opinion of the code official, they do not constitute a distinct hazard to life.

    [B] SECTION 304
    REPAIRS

    304.1 General.
    Buildings and structures, and parts thereof, shall be repaired in conformance with this section and with Section 301.2. Work on nondamaged components that is necessary for the required repair of damaged components shall be considered part of the repair and shall not be subject to the requirements for alterations in this chapter. Routine maintenance required by Section 301.2, ordinary repairs exempt from permit in accordance with Section 105.2, and abatement of wear due to normal service conditions shall not be subject to the requirements for repairs in this section.

    304.1.1 Dangerous conditions.
    Regardless of the extent of structural or nonstructural damage, the code official shall have the authority to require the elimination of conditions deemed dangerous.

    304.2 Substantial structural damage to vertical elements of the lateral-force-resisting system.
    A building that has sustained substantial structural damage to the vertical elements of its lateral-force-resisting system shall be evaluated and repaired in accordance with the applicable provisions of Sections 304.2.1 through 304.2.3.

    304.2.1 Evaluation.
    The building shall be evaluated by a registered design professional, and the evaluation findings shall be submitted to the code official. The evaluation shall establish whether the damaged building, if repaired to its pre-damage state, would comply with the provisions of this code for wind loads. Wind loads for this evaluation shall be those prescribed in Section 1609 of the Florida Building Code, Building.

    304.2.2 Extent of repair for compliant buildings.
    If the evaluation establishes compliance of the pre-damage building in accordance with Section 304.2.1, then repairs shall be permitted that restore the building to its pre-damage state using materials and strengths that existed prior to the damage.

    304.2.3 Extent of repair for noncompliant buildings.
    If the evaluation does not establish compliance of the pre-damage building in accordance with Section 304.2.1, then the building shall be rehabilitated to comply with applicable provisions of the Florida Building Code, Building for load combinations, including wind. The wind loads for the repair shall be as required by the building code in effect at the time of original construction, unless the damage was caused by wind, in which case the wind loads shall be as required by the building code in effect at the time of original construction or as required by the Florida Building Code, Building, whichever are greater. New structural members and connections required by this rehabilitation design shall comply with the detailing provisions of the Florida Building Code, Building for new buildings of similar structure, purpose and location.

    304.3 Substantial structural damage to gravity load-carrying components.
    Gravity load-carrying components that have sustained substantial structural damage shall be rehabilitated to comply with the applicable provisions of the Florida Building Code, Building for dead and live loads. Existing gravity load-carrying structural elements shall be permitted to be designed for live loads approved prior to the damage. Nondamaged gravity load-carrying components that receive dead or live loads from rehabilitated components shall also be rehabilitated or shown to have the capacity to carry the design loads of the rehabilitation design. New structural members and connections required by this rehabilitation design shall comply with the detailing provisions of the Florida Building Code, Building for new buildings of similar structure, purpose and location.

    304.3.1 Lateral force-resisting elements.
    Regardless of the level of damage to vertical elements of the lateral force-resisting system, if substantial structural damage to gravity load-carrying components was caused primarily by wind effect, then the building shall be evaluated in accordance with Section 304.2.1 and, if noncompliant, rehabilitated in accordance with Section 304.2.3.

    304.4 Less than substantial structural damage.
    For damage less than substantial structural damage, repairs shall be allowed that restore the building to its pre-damage state using materials and strengths that existed prior to the damage. New structural members and connections used for this repair shall comply with the detailing provisions of the Florida Building Code, Building, for new buildings of similar structure, purpose and location.

    304.5 Flood hazard areas.
    For buildings and structures in flood hazard areas established in Section 1612.3 of the Florida Building Code, Building, any repair that constitutes substantial improvement of the existing structure, as defined in Section 1612.2 of the Florida Building Code, Building shall comply with the flood design requirements for new construction, and all aspects of the existing structure shall be brought into compliance with the requirements for new construction for flood design. For buildings and structures in flood hazard areas established in Section 1612.3 of the Florida Building Code, Building, any repairs that do not constitute substantial improvement or substantial damage of the existing structure, as defined in Section 1612.2 of the Florida Building Code, Building, are not required to comply with the flood design requirements for new construction.

    [B] SECTION 305
    FIRE ESCAPES

    305.1 Where permitted.
    Fire escapes shall be permitted only as provided for in Sections 305.1.1 through 305.1.4.

    305.1.1 New buildings.
    Fire escapes shall not constitute any part of the required means of egress in new buildings.

    305.1.2 Existing fire escapes.
    Existing fire escapes shall continue to be accepted as a component in the means of egress in existing buildings only.

    305.1.3 New fire escapes.
    New fire escapes for existing buildings shall be permitted only where exterior stairs cannot be utilized due to lot lines limiting stair size or due to the sidewalks, alleys or roads at grade level. New fire escapes shall not incorporate ladders or access by windows.

    305.1.4 Limitations.
    Fire escapes shall comply with this section and shall not constitute more than 50 percent of the required number of exits nor more than 50 percent of the required exit capacity.

    305.2 Location.
    Where located on the front of the building and where projecting beyond the building line, the lowest landing shall not be less than 7 feet (2134 mm) or more than 12 feet (3658 mm) above grade, and shall be equipped with a counterbalanced stairway to the street. In alleyways and thoroughfares less than 30 feet (9144 mm) wide, the clearance under the lowest landing shall not be less than 12 feet (3658 mm).

    305.3 Construction.
    The fire escape shall be designed to support a live load of 100 pounds per square foot (4788 Pa) and shall be constructed of steel or other approved noncombustible materials. Fire escapes constructed of wood not less than nominal 2 inches (51 mm) thick are permitted on buildings of Type V construction. Walkways and railings located over or supported by combustible roofs in buildings of Type III and IV construction are permitted to be of wood not less than nominal 2 inches (51 mm) thick.

    305.4 Dimensions.
    Stairs shall be at least 22 inches (559 mm) wide with risers not more than, and treads not less than, 8 inches (203 mm) and landings at the foot of stairs not less than 40 inches (1016 mm) wide by 36 inches (914 mm) long, located not more than 8 inches (203 mm) below the door.

    305.5 Opening protectives.
    Doors and windows along the fire escape shall be protected with 3/4-hour opening protectives.

    [B] SECTION 306
    GLASS REPLACEMENT

    306.1 Conformance.
    The installation or replacement of glass shall be as required for new installations.

    SECTION 307
    CHANGE OF OCCUPANCY

    [B] 307.1 Conformance.
    No change shall be made in the use or occupancy of any building that would place the building in a different division of the same group of occupancy or in a different group of occupancies, unless such building is made to comply with the requirements of the Florida Building Code, Building for such division or group of occupancy. Subject to the approval of the building official, the use or occupancy of existing buildings shall be permitted to be changed and the building is allowed to be occupied for purposes in other groups without conforming to all the requirements of this code for those groups, provided the new or proposed use is less hazardous, based on life and fire risk, than the existing use.

    [B] 307.2 Certificate of occupancy.
    A certificate of occupancy shall be issued where it has been determined that the requirements for the new occupancy classification have been met.

    [B] 307.3 Stairways.
    Existing stairways in an existing structure shall not be required to comply with the requirements of a new stairway as outlined in Section 1009 of the Florida Building Code, Building where the existing space and construction will not allow a reduction in pitch or slope.

    [B] 307.4 Structural.
    Reserved.

    [EC] 307.5 Energy.
    See the Florida Building Code, Energy Conservation.

    307.6 Electrical.
    It shall be unlawful to make a change in the occupancy of a structure that will subject the structure to the special provisions of the Florida Building Code, Building related to electrical installations applicable to the new occupancy without approval. The code official shall certify that the structure meets the intent of the provisions of law governing building construction for the proposed new occupancy and that such change of occupancy does not result in any hazard to the public health, safety or welfare.

    [FG] 307.7 Fuel gas.
    It shall be unlawful to make a change in the occupancy of a structure that will subject the structure to the special provisions of the Florida Building Code, Fuel Gas applicable to the new occupancy without approval. The code official shall certify that the structure meets the intent of the provisions of law governing building construction for the proposed new occupancy and that such change of occupancy does not result in any hazard to the public health, safety or welfare.

    [M] 307.8 Mechanical.
    It shall be unlawful to make a change in the occupancy of a structure that will subject the structure to the special provisions of the Florida Building Code, Mechanical applicable to the new occupancy without approval. The code official shall certify that the structure meets the intent of the provisions of law governing building construction for the proposed new occupancy and that such change of occupancy does not result in any hazard to the public health, safety or welfare.

    [P] 307.9 Plumbing.
    It shall be unlawful to make a change in the occupancy of a structure that will subject the structure to the special provisions of the Florida Building Code, Plumbing applicable to the new occupancy without approval. The code official shall certify that the structure meets the intent of the provisions of law governing building construction for the proposed new occupancy and that such change of occupancy does not result in any hazard to the public health, safety or welfare.

    [B] SECTION 308
    HISTORIC BUILDINGS
    SEE CHAPTER 11

    [B] SECTION 309
    MOVED STRUCTURES

    309.1 Conformance.
    See Chapter 12.

    [B] SECTION 310
    ACCESSIBILITY FOR EXISTING BUILDINGS

    See the Florida Building Code, Accessibility.

    [B] SECTION 311
    ENERGY CONSERVATION

    See the Florida Building Code, Energy Conservation.

    SECTION 312
    REROOFING

    See Section 611, Reroofing, of this code.

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