How can we make new buildings more accessible in BC? The Province is inviting all British Columbians to provide their feedback about the BC Building Code accessibility requirements.
Make your voice heard and participate in the online survey by December 9, 2021. The input collected will be used to help government develop changes to the next BC Building Code to make new buildings more accessible.
This effort follows the adoption of the Accessible British Columbia Act which came into force in 2021. The act provides the framework to create accessibility standards to identify, remove and prevent barriers.
The Ministry of Attorney General and Responsible for Housing will publish an online report summarizing key themes of the public engagement in the new year. Proposed accessibility code changes based on the feedback received will then be developed and are expected to be released for further feedback before they are included in the next BC Building Code.
Accessibility and the BC Building Code
The BC Building Code provides a standard set of rules for construction throughout the province. It establishes minimum accessibility code requirements for the design and construction of new buildings, including schools and recreation centres, care, treatment or detention occupancies (such as hospitals, clinics, and jails), offices, stores, hotels/motels, and common spaces in apartments and condominiums. The BC Building Code changes about every five years. A building must meet the BC Building Code that’s in force when it is built.
Accessibility requirements within the building code set the rules for the design and construction of new buildings to ensure people can approach, enter, exit and move through buildings independently. Local governments throughout B.C. help enforce the building code so that buildings are safe and healthy to visit, work and live in. The Province is also working with provincial and national partners to help inform a harmonized approach to accessibility requirements in future national and provincial building codes.