Commercial Building Control in London

London Building Control Ltd can be used as the building control body for all commercial building control, approved to do so by the Construction Industry Council (CIC) on behalf of the Secretary of State.

Flats, Shops, Offices, Industrial units, Educational and Health Care buildings all require commercial building control

The Approved Inspector Building Control Process is set out in The Building Control Process.

Fire Safety

For commercial work (including the common parts of flats) we need to carry out consultations with the Fire Authority with reference to the means of escape and access for fire fighters and vehicles. Particular attention needs to be given where there is sleeping accommodation, usually needing smoke detectors and smoke ventilation of common stairs and lobbies. Likewise basements/basement carparks need particular care and ventilation.

Consultation with the Fire Authority is required under the Regulatory Order for buildings which the public may use or where people are employed. As part of this Order employers are required to carry out a Fire Safety Risk Assessment, which LBC can arrange.

Energy Conservation

Commercial buildings will require SBEM thermal calculations (with a Target Emission Rate compared to the Building Emission Rate). Flats require SAP 2009 calculations.

Energy Performance Certificates are also required at end of works and air tightness tests will usually be needed as part of the energy assessment for these projects.

Planning may often ask for additional items under the requirements for Sustainable Homes.

LBC can help advise you on any of these matters or refer you to consultants.

Access for the disabled

Access and facilities for the disabled also need to be considered in some detail, often with an access statement, covering the provision for disabled toilets and facilities (showers, changing rooms, lowered counters etc). Wheelchair refuges by stairs may also be needed where users can await rescue in a fire.

Acoustics

Acoustic testing is needed for flats and residential rooms.

Structure

Often structural calculations are needed in support of the design – for steel columns or beams, or for unusual foundations etc.

Help from Consultants

LBC can refer you to consultants for the required assessments (structural engineers, energy and acoustic assessors, or fire safety engineers). This independent advice would then form a comprehensive package for your project.