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The International Code Council voted to approve a package of 14 proposed tall mass timber code changes that create three new types of construction (IV-A, IV-B and IV-C), as well as set fire safety requirements and allowable heights, areas and number of stories for tall mass timber buildings. The new provisions will be included in the 2021 International Building Code.

The three new types of construction are:

  • Type IV-A: maximum 18 stories, with gypsum wallboard on all mass timber elements
  • Type IV-B: maximum 12 stories, with a limited area of exposed mass timber walls and ceilings allowed
  • Type IV-C: maximum nine stories, with all exposed mass timber designed for two-hour fire resistance

The ICC’s code development cycle continues through 2019. Additional structural requirements for tall mass timber buildings will be considered, with final approval of 2019 proposals expected to occur in late October. The 2021 IBC is expected to be released in late 2020, along with the full set of 2021 I-codes.

More information is available from the American Wood Council.


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