3.

Relocate and Protect Building Systems

Enacted
Implemented

Legislation at a Glance

3: Relocate and Protect Building Systems

Implemented

Local Law 100 of 2013

Summary

The first and lower floors of many existing buildings are at risk from flooding because they are below flood level, and essential building equipment is often located on these lower floors. This law requires that vulnerable building elements – such as electrical services, fire protection systems, compressed gas or hazardous material tanks, and vent piping – must be located above the design flood elevation in new and renovated buildings in flood zones. It also requires hospitals to build to the 500-year flood elevation, rather than the 100-year flood elevation.

New Requirements or Changes

Effective: December 31, 2014

NYC Building Code, Appendix G

This legislation applies to new construction or significant renovation of buildings located in flood zones, as defined in the code.

  • Section G304.1.1, items 5.1 – 5.4

Certain structures that are particularly vulnerable to flooding must be located above the flood line. First, certain elements of fire alarm and protection systems must be located at or above the design flood elevation as defined in the code. Second, in fuel oil piping systems, the piping must terminate at least three feet above the design flood elevation. Third, in plumbing systems, relief vents and fresh air intakes serving building traps must be carried above grade and terminate in a screened outlet outside of the building at or above the design flood elevation.

  • Section G304.4

Hospitals in the shaded X-Zone (above the 1% annual chance flood elevation, or 100-year flood, but within the 0.2% annual chance, or 500-year flood area) must comply with the chapter’s requirements for flood-resistant construction.

  • Section G307.5

In hospitals, tanks or containers storing compressed gas, flammable gas, or other hazardous materials must be located above the 500-year-flood elevation (or above the design flood elevation, if that is higher). In non-hospital buildings, such tanks or containers must be located above the design flood elevation. In either case, the tanks and containers must be designed to continue to function under flood conditions.

  • Section G501.1

ASCE 24, as incorporated into the flood-resistant construction code, is modified in two ways. First, hospitals must use the greater of the design flood elevation or the 500-year-flood when determining minimum elevation for the top of the lowest floor, bottom of lowest supporting horizontal structural member, flood-proofing, location of utilities and attendant equipment. Second, the main disconnect switch, all service disconnecting means, and all circuit breakers must be located above and be accessible from the design flood elevation. Switches, all service disconnecting means, and circuit breakers must be located no more than 6 feet 7 inches above the floor, or a platform must be installed to provide access.

Enforcement

The Department of Buildings will enforce these requirements as part of its normal inspection process.

Implementation

There are no known issues with implementing this legislation.