Construction Advisory Group is committed to contributing to the industry by conducting a blog-conversation on monitoring projects and navigating the construction world.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Determination of code amendments in whose hands?



The International Code Council has issued a statement that, "The ICC governmental consensus process leaves the final determination of code provisions in the hands of public safety officials who, with no vested financial interest, can legitimately represent the public interest."

Shouldn't the final determination be implemented by qualified and well-recognized Architectural/Engineering authorities?

Among many others, the following items are newly introduced in amendments to the codes:

1) "Fire Service Elevators" - in buildings 120 feet or higher.
2) "Wind Tunnel Testing" - the proposal references a new testing standard.
3) "Additional Exit Stairs" - on all high-rise buildings higher than 420 feet.
4) "Exit Enclosure Integrity" - to be increased from the actual 2PSI.
5) "Building Burnout Survivability" - buildings higher than 420 feet to be designed as not to collapse when exposed to fire.

These amendments raise legitimate questions regarding construction costs, among others. The conversation around the ICC statement is interesting.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Construction down market still offers opportunities

Even with a profit slump of 57 percent caused directly by the slowdown in nonresidential construction, Canam - manufacturers of welded beams, girders and joists - sees opportunity ahead.

The lesson here is that rainmakers, creative thinkers, nimble decision makers can parlay negatives into positives.

Canam, according to a Reuters news story, reports that it intends to stay profitable for the rest of this year. And, they say that they have a broad choice of acquisition targets. Targets made accessible by the same economic slowdown that has hit Canam's own profits.

"As we enter a more challenging business environment, we've seen an increase in the number of acquisition opportunities we are presented with, and we are more than ever convinced that our strengthening balance sheet will be a great asset in the quarters to come," Reuters quotes Canam Chief Operating Officer Marc Dutil.

Canam has won the contract for the retractable roof at the new Marlins ballpark.