A large group of New York City design professionals attended the NYSSPE’s second annual New York City Design Professionals Day on October 22nd, 2015. New York City Department of Buildings (DOB) Commissioner Rick Chandler, PE opened the event with his “Building One City” presentation. Chandler spoke about the Department of Building’s Transformative Blueprint for Change. This new plan is focused on enhancing public safety, reorganizing processes, and reducing wait times through a more efficient and modern system of operation at the NYC Department of Buildings. Some notable implementations will include an increase of 159 plan examiners and 34 development inspectors over two years, the launch of a dedicated affordable housing unit, a redesign of the DOB’s online presence and capabilities, and a big push to make online plan review and submission the default practice in New York City.
Following Mr. Chandler’s summary of the great changes coming to NYC and its Buildings Department, Timothy Lynch, PE took the stage to speak about Deterioration of Historic Construction & Prior Codes and How They Mesh. Mr. Lynch over-viewed the minimum requirements and standards for buildings in NYC and what constitutes maintaining a structure in a safe condition based on NYC Building Codes.
Dan Eschenasy, PE followed next with a presentation regarding Inspections of Old Retaining Walls. He reviewed the different types of retaining walls, such as Gravity Walls, Cantilever Walls, Anchored Walls, Bulkheads, and Seawalls, among others. Next he outlined the various modes of failure for retaining structures, such as sliding, rotating, crushing or general sliding of soil. Mr. Eschenasy moved on to some case studies and found data supporting that 1 out of 3 failing retaining walls are caused by drainage systems that were inadequately designed or missing all together, and that 2 out of 5 walls were improperly back-filled with clay on a clay foundation.
Gus Sirakis, PE presented on the Structural Requirements of the 2014 NYC Construction Codes. Sirakis discussed various structural load requirements and any updates that need to be incorporated into design for the new code, including Dead, Live, Snow, Wind, Soil Lateral, Rain, Food, and Earthquake Loads. He also touched on material specific code requirements, including work with Concrete, Masonry, Steel, and Wood. He concluded with an in-depth discussion about designing in Coastal Flood Zones and how to design buildings to resist flood loads and impacts from waves.
Yegal Shamash, PE followed Mr. Sirakis, and led an in-depth discussion about the Concrete Industry in NYC. He spoke about some of his experiences working as an Executive Engineer for the Investigative Engineering Services and showed a variety of Field Inspections from inside the Concrete Enforcement Unit.
To end the day, Joseph Pasaturo, PE, presented on the NYC Building Code Chapter 17; an Overview of Special Inspection Requirements. He outlined the responsibilities of the special inspection agency and the permit holder. He also explain a variety of special inspections, including steel, concrete, masonry, subsurface, sprayed fire resistant materials, exterior insulation and finish systems among others.
The NYSSPE was once again very pleased with the event turnout and quality of the presentations The NYC Design Professionals Day continues to be an event that brings NYC design professionals together for a great networking experience where they can converse and learn from one another.
All of the presentations from the event can be found here on the NYC DOB website:
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