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Commissioner's Column

Commissioner Robert LiMandri

WELCOME to the new – and improved – version of Buildings News.

Our bi-weekly newsletter, which provides up-to-date information about the Buildings Department, service changes and new requirements, has grown tremendously since its first edition in 2004 and has become the go-to guide for contractors, developers, architects, engineers and workers who want to build in New York City.

Today, the online newsletter has more than 16,000 subscribers – more than

four times the total in 2006 – and the list keeps growing. So we decided to revise the newsletter’s format and make it easier to access the latest information our readers want to know, including links to our Web site and online property database.

In the coming weeks, we will introduce new photographs and new topics, such as construction safety tips, guest columns and profiles on our staff members in the field.

We will also be following the urbanSHED International Design Competition, which was launched last month. This competition challenges architects, engineers, designers and students around the globe to develop a sidewalk shed that enhances the pedestrian experience without sacrificing safety.  The winning design will be chosen in December and installed at a job site in Lower Manhattan thanks to the support of the Alliance for Downtown New York.

I hope you enjoy reading the new Buildings News, and remember to stay safe on the job site.

Robert LiMandri

  New GPS Technology
The Department is now using global-positioning system (GPS) technology to track the locations of the Department's 379 inspectors during their daily inspection routes. With GPS installed in the inspectors' Department-issued cell phones, this tracking system will better ensure the integrity of

inspections, while helping unit heads dispatch resources more efficiently and provide employees with greater security during the course of their duties. By the end of September, the routes of all construction inspectors, as well as inspectors from the Boilers, Cranes and Derricks, Electrical, Elevators and Plumbing units, will be electronically monitored.

New Requirements
There are several important requirements that become effective October 1.

These changes are designed to bring more oversight to the construction process and include:

NCCCO Documentation - Licensed Class C Hoisting Machine Operators must submit documentation of CCO certification to the Licensing Unit in order to maintain qualification to operate in New York City. Call (212) 566-4100 to schedule an appointment to exchange your license card.

Safety Registration Numbers - Individuals and organizations performing or supervising certain construction projects will need a new Safety Registration Number. Registration is required even for those who already have a tracking number.

New TR1 - Applicants must use the 10/09 version of the TR1 for jobs that not yet been issued a permit. On the updated version, there is a new item for "alternative materials," the "Concrete Test Cylinders" and "Concrete Design Mix" items have been modified and a final inspection report is required within 30 days of the final inspection.

New Request Form - Applicants must use the new PER11 form to request an appointment or to drop off a folder.

Development Coordinator Initiative
The Mayor’s Office has extended its initiative to help real estate developers, builders, contractors, and licensed professionals working on private developments that have been delayed because of conflicting City policies. The initiative is being piloted in Brooklyn
through the end of September and thereafter is expanding to Queens.  For more information and to submit your Brooklyn or Queens project for consideration, visit

Service Updates

B-SCAN Requirements
Plans must meet certain specifications to comply with
B-SCAN requirements and be accepted by the Department.

Facade Safety Program
Facade (LL 11/98) Reports for Cycle 6 must be submitted by
February 20, 2010.

Energy Code Compliance
On October 5, the Department will begin formal audits of
construction applications for compliance with the Energy Conservation Construction Code of New York State (ECCCNYS).

Penalty Relief Program
As part of the NYC Penalty Relief Program, between
September 21 and December 21, individuals who failed to attend ECB hearings and have had the higher "default" penalty imposed may be able to reduce the amount of fines owed.  More details will announced in the coming weeks.

Earthwork Notification
Contractors must call the Customer Service Call Center
at (212) 393-2550 to notify the Department 24 to 48 hours prior to commencing earth or excavation work.

Holiday Closure
The Department will be closed on September 7, 2009 in
observance of Labor Day.

Keep reading Buildings News for new information and updates.

Upcoming Events

2009 Urban Green Expo

On September 23, Commissioner LiMandri will discuss the Department's role in PlaNYC and sustainability initiatives as part of the 2009 Urban Green Expo. Associated with the conference,
which runs from September 22-23, the Department will host seminars in energy-conserving design and the energy code on September 21.

urbanSHED Design Competition
Help make New York City’s streets safe, attractive and pedestrian-friendly. Participate in the urbanSHED design competition. Registration
ends September 18.

Plumbing Information Sessions
We are hosting additional plumbing information sessions to review the plumbing filing
process. These sessions will be held from 1:00pm - 4:00pm in the 6th floor conference room at Department headquarters at 280 Broadway in Manhattan on October 13, October 27, November 10, November 17 and December 8.
Did You Know...that in the first half of the year the Department distributed 1,500 posters, 300 banners and 20,000 pamphlets in seven languages to job sites and worker centers across the City, reminding workers to stay safe and wear their harnesses? 
Department of Buildings

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September 3, 2009