Monday, June 17, 2024
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Building code to focus on sustainability

The Government of Fiji is requesting stakeholders to provide opinions, comments and ideas regarding the update to the Fiji National Building Code (FNBC).

The new building code will focus on sustainable building design and climate resilience which is a key component in fulfilling Fiji’s commitment to creating a greener and more sustainable future as prescribed in the Climate Change Act, 2021.

Public input is essential to ensuring that the standards reflect the vision and application needs of the people of Fiji.

The Fiji National Building Code mostly references the Australian and New Zealand Standards as Fiji shares the same geographical location with these countries.

These standards generally do not make any reference to its year of publication, which means in the event there is an update on the principal standard, the same Standard referenced in the Code is automatically updated.

Thus, new approaches to health, safety and the environment are recognised in the Code when standards are concurrently updated.

Furthermore, the Code is yet to address the requirements of new building provisions, for example, disability access, the use of sustainable quality building materials and, modern construction practices

Building techniques, materials and construction practices have changed considerably since then, and standards must reflect new approaches to health, safety and the environment.

The building code update will address three primary priorities of concern, Sustainability, Inclusion, and Innovation.

The fifteen-month project began in May 2022 and is expected to be completed in July 2023.

The Government of Fiji would like to invite all stakeholders to participate.

Stakeholders can provide feedback through a short survey launched on the government website early this year, at: www.mims.gov.fj.

The website provides up-to-date information and a schedule of public engagement opportunities. Formal engagement sessions will be held at a later date through online and face-to-face consultations around Fiji to review the first draft of the Building Code in May 2023.

The Government of Fiji, in partnership with the Asian Development Bank, initiated a process to update the Fiji National Building Code (FNBC) and the Fiji Home Builders Manual (FHBM) as part of a strategy to improve health, safety, and climate resilience. Wavefront Planning and Design, a Canadian development design and policy firm that recently completed the update to the Samoa National Building Code, in consultation with engineering and architectural professionals from Fiji and Samoa, were selected to manage the project.

Andrew Pene, the Director of the Department of Buildings and Government Architect at the Ministry of Public Works, Meteorological Services and Transport, is the main contact for the project.

A Joint Task Group, consisting of 37 representatives from government ministries and the private sector, are generously volunteering their knowledge and experience in the building industry, ensuring that local expertise is a key element in preparing the update to the Building Code.

Reginald Chandar
Reginald Chandar
Head of News & Sports | news@fijilive.com

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