July 12, 2019
City to Recommend Interior Sprinklers on New Homes
Greeley’s Chief Building Official, Tim Swanson, says the City’s Construction Trades Advisory and Appeals Board (CTAAB) is recommending residential fire sprinklers inside all new single-family and duplex homes as part of the 2018 revisions to the International Residential Code (IRC).
Sprinklers have been part of the IRC for years but most cities, including Greeley, have deleted the requirement as they have updated their building codes, fearing the cost of sprinklers would add too much to the cost of new homes. Swanson says the CTAAB “feels that the life-safety benefit of adopting the Code as written is important and appropriate at this time.”He estimated the cost for sprinklers at $1.35 per square foot –or $3,375 for a 2,500 SF home — according to a 2013 national survey. Swanson said many builders already install sprinklers in home basements, so the technology is already familiar.
The City Council will discuss the 2018 IRC at a work session on July 23. Assuming there are few changes, the Council would begin the formal adoption process at a regular meeting on August 6.
Note: As part of his research, Swanson surveyed over 60 jurisdictions in Colorado. Approximately 6 to 8 currently require sprinklers for single-family homes, including Cherry Hills and Aspen.