For designers, property developers, and fire engineers:
A common misunderstanding about roads and access lots relative to fire safety is a common cause of delays in the Building Consenting process. For example, Commonly or Jointly Owned Access Lots, (COAL/ JOAL), are common in multi-lot property developments and are needed for access to new buildings from the road. These shared access driveways are generally considered allotments of land as opposed to roads or public open spaces, resulting in the Building Code affording protection to them against a fire from another property.
While the detail may be confusing the solution is straightforward. Make a request that the Building Code be altered to consider the shared access as a road and be treated as such. TAs that are also BCAs have the authority to do this. The most common methodology they use is to alter the definition of a relevant boundary, (code clause A2), relative to how it relates to fires affecting areas beyond its source, (code clause C3.6/ C3.7). Problem avoided!
If you need an expert to sort this out for you, get in touch and Mike Cox, our Senior Technical Building Specialist will help.
Disclaimer: This publication is general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for legal or other professional advice. Please seek specific professional advice before acting in relation to any statement contained in this publication.