Why do we need a performance-based building code?

Performance-based design has both advanced and grown in popularity over the past few decades, and many of the standards development organizations in the United States have embraced performance-based design. ASCE-7 now includes performance-based approaches for structural design. Designing for energy efficiency in commercial buildings is significantly performance-based, including energy demand and consumption performance criteria, through the use of performance criteria in the International Green Construction Code (IgCC) and the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). ASHRAE and NFPA have also produced many standards with performance criteria and design approaches. Other entities, such as the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS), with its high performance building design resource, and the General Services Administration, through its specifications, have embraced performance-based design. Recently the American Institute of Architects (AIA), in its “Commitment 2030,” has stated an aim to move regulation and design to become more performance based. And in response, performance criteria and methods have been incorporated into the International Building Code (IBC). All of this suggests a much wider acceptance of performance-based approaches in the United States compared with 20 years ago when the ICCPC was first developed.

Updated on June 24, 2021

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