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Canada: emergency change to building code on balcony glass requested

Toronto’s planning and growth management committee states that action is needed on glass balconies, due to a series of incidents of glass panel failure on high-rise condominiums, and recommends on four initiatives concerning the review of the use of glass panel balcony guards.

After a series of incidents of glass panel failure on high-rise condominiums in Toronto, a report from the City’s planning and growth management committee states that action is needed on glass balconies. With current standards set 20 years ago, the planning and growth management committee recommends on four initiatives concerning the review of the use of glass panel balcony guards.
The first is a request that the Canadian Commission on Building and Fire Codes and the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing consider an emergency amendment to the Ontario Building Code regarding public safety in the event of more glass panel failures.
“Supporting the continuous improvement in the building process is a priority for the association and its 1,350 member companies. Therefore, the industry has been actively working with the City of Toronto Chief Building Official and staff to study the glass balcony panel guards,” said BILD in a statement.
“BILD will continue to work with the City of Toronto and has committed to supporting and educating its members as they continue to build a greater GTA.”
Another recommendation encourages Industry Canada, Canadian Glass Association, the Safety Glazing Certification Council and the Glass Association of North America to communicate and coordinate a comprehensive review of compliance safety standards for the manufacturing of non-metallic product used to produce architectural glazing materials.
The final recommendation is that Toronto Building re-evaluate wind tunnel standards and criteria and report to the planning and growth management committee on changes to improve modelling and application standards.

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