WASHINGTON — Leaders of the design and construction industry, including ASHRAE, have announced an agreement to incorporate resilience in planning, design, construction, and operational techniques to make the nation’s building infrastructure more safe and secure. Resilience is defined as the ability to prepare and plan for, absorb, recover from, and more successfully adapt to adverse events.
The leadership of almost two-dozen design and construction industry associations used the occasion of “Building Safety Month” to issue a joint statement on resilience, which can be found here.
The statement was unveiled at a press conference at the National Building Museum, where a major exhibition titled “Designing for Disaster” presents design and building solutions for disaster mitigation.
“We recognize that natural and man-made hazards pose an increasing threat to the safety of the public and the vitality of our nation,” says the statement. “We further recognize that contemporary planning, building materials, design, construction, and operational techniques can make our communities more resilient to these threats.”
ASHRAE noted that it has been engaged in the area of resilience for a number of years. Its guidance includes ASHRAE Guideline 29-2009, “Guideline for the Risk Management of Public Health and Safety in Buildings;” the “Report of Presidential Ad Hoc Committee for Building Health and Safety under Extraordinary Incidents” developed after the events of Sept. 11, 2001; and guidance related to seismic restraint, including the “Practical Guide to Seismic Restraint, 2nd Edition” and ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 171-2008, Method of Testing Seismic Restraint Devices for HVAC&R Equipment.
“The built environment industry strives to design, construct, and operate buildings to withstand both natural disasters and man-made hazards,” said Bill Bahnfleth, ASHRAE president. “We must use the knowledge gleaned from disasters like the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, Superstorm Sandy, last year’s Oklahoma City tornado, and others, as well as predictions of the effects of climate change, to our advantage to save lives and infrastructure in the future. ASHRAE is pleased to stand beside these other organizations in making this commitment to protect the public and building stock.”
For more information about ASHRAE, visit www.ashrae.org.
Publication date: 5/19/2014