The city of Pacific is preparing to update the building codes that new construction projects will be required to meet.
Plans are under way to establish the 2009 building codes as the official regulation.
The codes are currently being used in most of Franklin County, according to City Engineer Dan Rahn.
“We’ll post the codes for 90 days to give contractors a chance to look at them before we ask the board of aldermen to enact an ordinance,” Rahn said.
The posting notified contractors that copies of the new 2009 International Building Codes are available at Pacific City Hall for contractors to review on the premises.
For a more thorough look at the codes, those interested could buy the International Code Council (ICC) published code book.
The Pacific building department currently uses the 2003 International Building Codes.
“All other cities in the Franklin County are already using the 2009 codes,” Rahn said. “We’re the last city to make the change.”
The 2009 codes offer one cost-saving element for contractors. If approved, the new code would allow the use of PEX pipe, which costs considerably less than the copper pipe that is required under the 2003 codes.
PEX, cross-linked polyethylene, is flexible, resistant to scale and chlorine, doesn’t corrode or develop pinholes, is faster to install than metal or rigid plastic, and has fewer connections and fittings.
“I don’t want to put a number on it, but it costs considerably less than copper piping,” Rahn said.
There also is some code for mechanical and HVAC, that Bill Davis, city building inspector, has been looking at, Rahn said.
After contractors have had an opportunity to review the new codes, Rahn will ask aldermen to enact an ordinance adopting the 2009 International Plumbing Code, Electrical Code, Fuel Gas Code, Building Code, Fire Code, Mechanical Code, Property Maintenance Code and Residential Code.
The upgrade is a stopgap for Pacific, Rahn said. The city will adopt the 2015 International Building Codes next year when other cities in the county make the same change.