Tuesday, June 29, 2010

New Washington State Green Building Standards delayed

Implementation of the new Washington State Green Building Standards is being delayed, as reported on KUOW earlier today. You can listen to the report here. Ross Reynolds interviewed Tim Nogler, the Managing Director of the Washington State Building Code Council, who says this is an unexpected delay, as the council has been working on the revisions since the beginning of 2009.

Governor Gregoire asked for the implementation to be delayed from July 1st until next year. Currently, the new implementation date is October 29th pending public hearings in September. There are concerns from the building industry about the cost of implementing these changes while the industry is already struggling in the economic downturn. The new standards will apply to both single family and commercial construction, so extra costs depend on the type of building. The standards include rules for more efficient mechanical systems, lighting, and air leakage control from ducts and the building envelope, which will require testing. Nogler estimates the extra costs at $1 per square foot to $2 per square foot depending on the occupancy. 

The delay should allow for stabilization of construction industry and time for public testimony.

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