Review of Building Codes

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During the 26th January 2001 earthquake, massive damage was observed in the epicentral region, several villages experienced 100% destruction to houses, all of which were made from local materials and had poor earthquake resistance. Only 10% of the structures in Kutch are engineered constructions but most of them do not comply with Indian Standard code provisions. During this earthquake, a very large number of engineered structures including those made out of reinforced concrete also suffered catastrophic collapse resulting in high casualty. 
Inadequate design and construction technology can be attributed as reasons for the same. Owing to this, GSDMA conducted a study on “Review of Building Codes and Preparation of Handbook and Commentary”. GSDMA undertook this study through Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur (IITK). The study identified the inadequacies in the existing BIS codes related to Earthquake, Wind and Fire and recommended changes/ improvements in the above codes to ensure hazard resistant building construction with specific reference to earthquakes, cyclones and fire.
The study also proved to be helpful in strengthening of existing codes and placed better understanding within the engineering community of the code provisions, strengthening the built environment against natural hazards, fire accidents etc. The revisions of building codes will be helpful in upgradations of General Development Control Regulations (GDCR) in Gujarat. GSDMA also undertook publication and distribution of handbooks and commentaries so as to disseminate information to the practicing engineers and the engineering associations in Gujarat.
Under this study GSDMA also prepared a manual for the protection of buildings against the terrorist attacks. This Manual will provide guidance to Architects and Engineers to design buildings so as to minimize the impact of terrorist attacks. Guidelines for Seismic Design of buried pipelines was also prepared under this study so that the system is able to maintain supplying capability as much as possible even under considerable local damage due to strong earthquake vibrations. Both these manuals were also made available to engineers in the form of commentaries.
For a wider dissemination of the revised building codes amongst the prospective users, soft copy of all the reports and guidelines are uploaded in the website of National Information Centre of Earthquake Engineering (NICEE) at Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IIT Kanpur). NICEE works to collect and maintain information resources/publication on earthquake engineering and make them available to interested users, as well as to undertake other outreach activities with a view to mitigate earthquake disaster.
 
The link to the NICEE webpage is as shown below:
National Information Centre of Earthquake Engineering at IIT Kanpur, INDIA
 
Revision of GDRCs and building codes comes under the purview of the Urban Development & Urban Housing Department (UD & UHD), Government of Gujarat. The action taken by the Department towards revision of the building codes and GDCRs of the concerned Urban Development Authorities and Area Development Authorities can be known from The link of the website of the UD & UHD shown below:
Urban Development & Urban Housing Department

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