Our project has a proposed layout includes convenience stairs next to a corridor that serves restrooms, utility spaces, and doors to large open office areas. It's a B-occupancy subject to NFPA 101 requirements.
As a side note, the International Building Code (2018) makes it clear that two-story openings are permitted in occupancies other than I-2 and I-3 when they meet certain limitations, per section 712.1.9. One of the limitations it that is it not open to a corridor, but that's in Group I or R occupancies only. Group I and R occupancies require special treatment for corridors.
NFPA 101 has similar provisions for Convenience Openings (Section 8.6.9). One of the requirements is that "such openings shall be separated from corridors", per section 22.214.171.124(3). If corridors in a building are not required to be separated (such as for an open-office B occupancy), does this requirement still apply, or is this section saying that we have to have rated corridors whenever we have convenience stair openings?
8.6.9 Convenience Openings.
126.96.36.199 Where permitted by Chapters 11 through 43, unenclosed vertical openings not concealed within the building construction shall be permitted as follows:
(1) Such openings shall connect not more than two adjacent stories (one floor pierced only).
(2) Such openings shall be separated from unprotected vertical openings serving other floors by a barrier complying
(3)* Such openings shall be separated from corridors.
(4)* In other than approved, existing convenience openings, such openings shall be separated from other fire or smoke compartments on the same floor.
(5) In new construction, the convenience opening shall be separated from the corridor referenced in 188.8.131.52(3) by a smoke partition, unless Chapters 11 through 43 require the corridor to have a fire resistance rating.
(6)* Such openings shall not serve as a required means of egress.
Posted anonymously for discussion. Discuss This | Submit Your Question | Subscribe
Subscribe and learn something new each day:
Thank You to Our Top
January '21 Contributors!
Sprinkler Designer or Engineer?
Get all of our tools, including the Sprinkler Database, Friction Loss Calculator, Fire Pump Analyzer and more:
Daily discussions are open-ended fire protection, fire alarm, and life safety questions submitted anonymously for the benefit of sharing expertise and learning from other perspectives. Anyone can submit a question here:
2020 PE Prep Guide
PE Prep Series
2020 PE Prep Series
(Click to enlarge)
Visit July-October for daily Fire Protection PE Exam sample questions.
Solutions are posted the day after posting.
Comment with your solutions, questions or clarifications.
Please note that questions posted are unofficial and in accordance with NCEES rules are intended to be similar to actual exam questions, not actual exam questions themselves.