The City Council unanimously passed a rezoning last month in Throgs Neck, Bronx.

The rezoning facilitates the construction of mixed use buildings at four different sites including permanently affordable housing, parking, a grocery store, senior center, youth center, and retail. For more information on the zoning text amendment and map amendment see the Zoning Application Portal.

The 2022 NYC Construction Codes went into effect on November 7th and are applicable to all new applications, including provisions for use of prior codes.

 

Formerly the First Deputy Commissioner for the DOB, Vilenchik has been a member of the Department since 2008. In his new role will oversee more than 1 million buildings and 40,000 construction sites throughout the city.

Prior to his tenure with the department Vilenchik served as First Deputy Commissioner. Before that he was the Brooklyn Borough Commissioner, and previously worked for over 20 years in the private sector.

The Department of Buildings recently announced that the Brooklyn Borough office is moving to 345 Adams Street, Third Floor, Brooklyn.  All contact information will remain the same.

The 210 Joralemon Street location will remain open through Friday, November 18th. The new Adams Street location will open on Monday, November 21st.

There will be a delay obtaining records for Brooklyn during the transition to the new office location. Record requests for Brooklyn applications will not be processed on November 16th – 17th and cannot be picked up on November 18th or 21st.

Stop Work Order Guidance

 

The Department of Buildings (DOB) published a Stop Work Order Guide to provide more information regarding the issuance of Full and Partial Stop Work Orders (SWO).While this is a useful reference tool, it is important to keep in mind that this document is a guide only and the DOB may still issue a SWO for another reason if they deem it necessary.

There are three key reasons why the DOB will issue a SWO:

1. Adjoining property/structures was significantly damaged

2. Someone was injured, both the public and construction personnel

3. Material/debris fell outside the property lines of the site

Additionally, please be reminded that the 2022 NYC Construction Codes go into effect on November 7, 2022. For more information see our prior newsletters.

 

The DOB publishes new energy efficiency grades and rating labels every year by October 1st. The building energy grades are based on the energy benchmarking data which must be submitted to DOB by May 1st of every year.The DOB also updates the published list of Covered Buildings every year, which can be searched by the property’s borough, block and lot (BBL) number. The annual Covered Buildings list can be accessed through the energy efficiency compliance instructions page. Property owners are also notified via the November tax bill of the requirement to comply.

Covered Buildings for energy efficiency ratings include:

·     a building more than 25,000 gross square feet

·     two or more buildings on a single tax lot that are more than 100,000 gross square feet

·     two or more condominium buildings that are more than 100,000 gross square feet

·     a city building

 

The energy efficiency rating is calculated through the benchmarking tool and given a letter grade of A through F. The energy efficiency label can be printed through the DOB NOW Public Portal, see DOB Service Notice for instructions.

Failure to display the energy efficiency rating label may result in a violation and $1,250 civil penalty. The label must be printed and displayed near each public entrance to a building at a vertical height of 4-6 feet. When new scores are published each year, the label must be replaced. It is not required that the label be framed or laminated however it is recommended to ensure all information is visible throughout the year.

Last week the Mayor and DOB Commissioner Eric A. Ulrich announced major steps to refocus the DOB on providing improved customer service and supporting the city’s economic recovery.

The Small Business Support Team (SBST) and the Major Projects Development Unit (MPDU) will accelerate project timelines by providing dedicated services to ensure applications avoid unnecessary pitfalls.

In the next 90 days industry groups, trade organizations, and advocacy groups will also meet and formulate recommendations to improve the DOB by providing a report to Mayor Adams and the City Council.

For more information see the recent DOB press release.

 

The 2022 NYC Construction Codes will go into effect on November 7, 2022. The 2014 Construction Codes apply for applications that include complete construction documents and are submitted before November 7, 2022.

  • For New Building applications, architectural, structural, and foundation drawings must be submitted before November 7 to continue use of the 2014 Code.
  • For enlargement applications, architectural, structural, and if applicable, foundation drawings must be submitted before November 7 to continue use of the 2014 Code.

The 2022 Construction Codes apply for applications that include complete construction documents and are submitted on or after November 7, 2022.

For more information regarding implementation of the 2022 Construction Codes see Buildings Bulletin 2022-007.

 

This week DOB issued Buildings Bulletin 2022-013 to clarify new code requirements for fireblocking in combustible exterior wall assemblies, ahead of the November 7th, 2022 effective date of the 2022 NYC Construction Codes.

Fireblocking is required in exterior wall assemblies that include combustible components, even if the assembly previously passed the NFPA 285 (2012) test. Noncombustible fireblocking is required around wall openings, at the floor level for 8” minimum height, and between different occupancy group classifications. Some fireblocking exceptions may apply to specific conditions.

The construction documents must include the manufacturer’s NFPA 285 test documentation for the exterior wall assembly and a statement from the application confirming compliance.

For more information see Buildings Bulletin 2022-013.

 

An Existing Building Code in New York City has long been discussed by the industry and the NYC Department of Buildings. The NYC Construction Codes currently allow compliance under Codes dating back to 1938, under certain conditions. In order for New York City to enact an Existing Building Code some legislation must first be passed at the State level, particularly changes to the NY State Multiple Dwelling Law (MDL).

The current proposed MDL text change includes a provision that allows the NYC Buildings Commissioner to waive provisions of MDL for the alteration or construction of multiple dwellings. It is anticipated that if passed, this will also mean that approval of the Board of Standards and Appeals (BSA) will no longer be needed for MDL variances.

Assembly Bill A09212 is currently in committee and still has several steps needed before the bill becomes law. For more information see the NY State Legislature page for A09212.

New NYC DOB Training Connect Site Safety Training (SST) Cards will be required for all workers and supervisors on SST construction sites beginning February 1, 2023.

The new SST Cards have been offered through DOB-approved course providers since January 1, 2022. Workers with SST Cards issued before 2022 should contact their course provider to have it replaced with a new card using the uniform design issued through the NYC DOB Training Connect website. Older SST Cards will no longer be accepted by DOB starting on February 1, 2023.

For more information see the DOB’s Site Safety Training page and DOB Service Notice which has a sample of the new SST Cards.