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Projects & Proposals > Citywide > Key Terms Clarification

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Key Terms Clarification Text Amendment - Approved!
Proposed Definitions

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Proposed Definition of “Building”
A "building" is any structure which:

(a) is located within the #lot lines# of a #zoning lot#;

(b) is permanently affixed to the land;

(c) has one or more floors and a roof; and

(d) is bounded by open area, or #fire walls#;

(e) has at least one #primary entrance#;

(f) provides all the vertical circulation and exit systems required for such #building# by the New York City Building Code without reliance on other #buildings#, including required stairs and elevators; and

(g) contains all the fire protection systems required for such #building# by the New York City Building Code without reliance on other #buildings#, including fire suppression or fire alarm systems. 
The provisions of this Resolution which use the term #building# shall apply to any structure existing prior to [date of adoption] that complies with paragraphs (a) through (e) of this definition. 

A #building# shall not include such structures as billboards, fences, or radio towers, or structures with interior surfaces not normally accessible for human use, such as gas tanks, smoke stacks, or similar structures.

A #building# may, for example, consist of a #detached single-family residence#, an #attached# townhouse on an individual #zoning lot#, an #attached# townhouse separated by #fire walls# from #abutting# townhouses on a shared #zoning lot#, a group of townhouses not separated by #fire walls# or #lot lines#, an apartment house, an office building or a factory.

Proposed Definition of “Fire Wall”
A “fire wall” is a fire-resistance-rated smoke-tight wall having protected openings which restricts the spread of fire and extends vertically without offset, continuously from the foundation to or through the roof, and is in accordance with the specifications of the New York City Building Code for fire walls or fire wall separations, as applicable.

Where a wall constructed prior to [date of adoption] does not meet the requirements of the preceding paragraph, but does meet the fire wall specifications of the New York City Building Code pursuant to which it was constructed, such wall shall be considered a #fire wall.#   In the event that such wall either fails to meet such specifications, or no specifications for fire walls existed at the time of its construction, the Commissioner of the Department of Buildings shall determine whether such wall shall be considered a #fire wall# for the purpose of determining the boundary of a #building#.


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