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American Wood Council

Free Heights & Areas Calculator now available in Windows

Jun 14, 2018

LEESBURG, VA. – The American Wood Council (AWC) and WoodWorks have released the Windows version of a free app to calculate maximum allowable heights and areas for buildings of various occupancy classifications and types of construction. The Heights & Areas Calculator is based on the provisions in the 2015 and earlier editions of the International Building Code (IBC).

Users can input the proposed building height and area for any occupancy, and the app shows allowable types of construction that are permitted. The “basic” version of the calculator limits building input to a single occupancy and equal floor areas for the entire building. An “advanced” option permits multiple occupancies and different floor areas.

“Determining allowable heights and areas for building code compliance can often be a tedious and time-intensive task for designers, builders, and code officials,” said Kenneth Bland, AWC Vice President of Codes & Regulations. “Making this free app available to the Windows platform makes it more broadly available to help make the process more user-friendly and to streamline the process for identifying compliant types of construction.”

“Wood construction offers distinct design advantages and this app makes its use more accessible,” said Bill Parsons, WoodWorks Vice President of Operations. “The app can be especially useful for designers dealing with mixed occupancies or looking to increase the size of their mid-rise projects, maximizing the value of their buildings.”

A recent webinar titled “Choosing Construction Type Just Got Easier: Design Tools to Simplify IBC Chapter 5 (BCD425)” provides a practical overview of the Heights & Areas Calculator along with a design example. Continuing education credits, including ICC Preferred Provider credits, are available.

The app is also available on iOS and Android devices. For links to the apps, visit the AWC website at: www.awc.org/codes-standards/calculators-software.

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