Energy Code Compliance

The Energy Code enforced by the New York City Department of Buildings states that architects’ and engineers’ plans must comply with the Energy Code. Furthermore, contractors must follow Energy Code-compliant drawings when commencing construction and throughout the project until completion. The Energy Code’s purpose is to provide for a cleaner, more sustainable energy-efficient city, and requires that all building or alteration applications comply with the Energy Conservation Construction Code of New York, which sets minimum requirements for buildings. The required documentation includes a professional statement, an energy analysis, and supporting documentation to demonstrate Energy Code compliance.

In the professional statement, design professionals must indicate that the application complies with the code, or if the project is exempt from requirements, the design professional must indicate the exemption and cite the code section allowing exemption. If compliance with fire protection, detection, alarm or suppression requirements conflict with Energy Code compliance, the Construction Code safety provisions will take precedence over the Energy Code, and design professionals must indicate such precedence on the application or in the drawings.

The energy analysis requirement states that design professionals must perform an energy analysis which illustrates how the project is in compliance with the Energy code. For new buildings, the energy analysis will be compared to a standard building with similar occupancy, massing, and number of floors and area to determine whether the proposed building is in compliance with the Energy Code. For building alterations, an energy analysis will be utilized to compare the values of each element of the alteration project with values required by the Energy Code. The energy analysis takes into consideration several factors, which include: residential buildings, commercial buildings, location, lead professional, the professional responsible for single discipline, and the registered design professional other than the applicant on record.

Supporting documents must reflect the descriptions, areas and values shown in the Energy Analysis, including envelope, HVAC and lighting/power. For envelope, such descriptions should be shown on the wall sections and door, window, and skylight schedules. For lighting, light layouts must be reflected on the floor plans, and wattage, fixtures, type, and quantity must be provided. For mechanical systems, all space heating and cooling equipment, water heating equipment, heat recovery systems, controls and sensors must be provided.

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