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Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments (View Public Comments Received:21)

Comment By: 
Monday, December 30, 2019
Proposed Rules Content: 


Statement of Basis and Purpose of Rule


The purpose of these proposed rule amendments is to clarify the qualifications and responsibilities of qualified exterior wall inspectors, as well as the requirements for exterior wall inspections and repairs.  Recent inspections have revealed significant deficiencies in façade compliance reporting by registered design professionals; therefore, the Department is enhancing the qualified exterior wall inspector qualifications, inspection requirements and civil penalties against owners to ensure public safety.


The rule:

  • adds new requirements regarding the experience and responsibilities of the Qualified Exterior Wall Inspector (QEWI) to ensure inspectors have appropriate knowledge of exterior walls and how to conduct inspections of those walls;
  • adds a new requirement that owners post and maintain the building facade status in the lobby in a manner similar to elevator certificates, to alert the building occupants of the exterior wall status;
  • adds a new requirement for close-up inspections to be performed at intervals of not more than 60’-0” fronting each public right-of-way in order to allow for more thorough inspections of the exterior wall;
  • adds a new requirement that the QEWI probes whether ties are present and in good condition at cavity wall buildings in every odd cycle because there have been recent failures of cavity walls due to missing or deficient ties;
  • requires photographic evidence of close-up inspections in progress to guard against false filings;
  • increases civil penalties and adds a new one for failure to correct “safe with a repair and maintenance program” (SWARMP) conditions to compel owners to maintain exterior walls in a safe condition;
  • modifies the criteria for waiving civil penalties; and
  • makes plain language revisions throughout. 

The Department of Buildings’ authority for this rule is found in sections 643 and 1043 of the New York City Charter and Article 302 of Title 28 of the New York City Administrative Code.


New material is underlined.

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Department of Buildings
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New York, NY 10007

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Adopted Rules: Closed to Comments

Adopted Rules Content: 



Statement of Basis and Purpose of Final Rule


The Environmental Control Board held a public hearing on June 12, 2012 regarding amendments to its Department of Buildings (DOB) Penalty Schedule. This schedule is found in Section 3-103 of Subchapter G of Chapter 3 of Title 48 of the Rules of the City of New York (RCNY). One member from the public and a representative from DOB attended the public hearing and testified on ECB’s proposed rule regarding concrete washout water and unsafe facades. One written comment from DOB was received. The Board has considered the testimony from the member of the public as well as the testimony and the written comment from DOB and has revised the “Violation Description” in the entry for 28-302.5 within Section 3 of the Rule to read as follows: “Failure to take required measures to secure public safety- unsafe façade” instead of “Failure to timely correct unsafe condition.”


These amendments will create penalties for certain sections of the New York City Building Code, Administrative Code, and RCNY to better enforce these provisions.


Section 1. Concrete Washout Water


Concrete washout water damages New York City’s environment, sewer and drainage systems. The amendment creates penalties for violations of Section 3303.15 of the New York City Building Code as added by Local Law 70 of 2011. Local Law 70 of 2011 regulates concrete washout water, defined as wastewater from the rinsing of equipment used to mix, transport, convey and/or place concrete. Local Law 70 of 2011 will take effect July 1, 2012.


Sections 2 through 4. Public Safety Measures for the Maintenance of Exterior Walls


When the exterior walls and appurtenances (façades) of a building become unsafe, they pose a serious threat to public safety. The amendments create penalties for violations of the following provisions, which require certain procedures for the safe maintenance of building façades:

Section 28-302.3 of the Administrative Code;

Section 28-302.5 of the Administrative Code; and

Section 103-04(b)(5)(iii) of Title 1 of the RCNY.


Article 302 of Title 28 of the Administrative Code sets forth maintenance requirements for the façades of buildings greater than 6 stories. Section 28-302.3 requires a registered design professional who learns of an unsafe condition upon examining a façade to immediately notify the DOB. When an unsafe condition is reported, Section 28-302.5 requires the building owner, the owner’s agent, or the person in charge of the building to take immediate steps to remedy those conditions.


Section 103-04(b)(5)(iii) of Title 1 of the RCNY requires the building owner, the owner’s agent, or the person in charge of the building to get approval from the DOB before removing a shed or protective measure from a building’s exterior.




Effective Date: 
Sat, 08/11/2012