The Architectural Institute of British Columbia and the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia have expressed concern about the government's controversial promise to allow the construction of five and six storey wood-frame buildings. In a letter sent to the government's building safety branch on July 18, the groups stated they would support that promised change if the government could address 15 issues related to the construction of such buildings. Among them: "fire safety," "structural and seismic issues," "wood shrinkage" and the likelihood of "higher environmental moisture loads" in six-storey wood-frame residences. That being said, the groups also warned "the compressed time-frame we are operating under increases the risk that some issues or solutions to problems will not be identified prior to the changes to the (BC Building) Code." The letter - which was sent prior to a September 17 stakeholder meeting - echoes earlier earthquake and fire concerns about such residences.
October 20, 2008