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Building Code Gets First Overhaul Since 1949

Mayor Rahm Emanuel has signed an ordinance providing for Chicago’s first comprehensive overhaul of its building code since 1949. The ordinance was approved by City Council late last month.

The overhaul puts Chicago among the first major jurisdictions in the U.S. to adopt the 2018 International Building Code. Among other updates, the new code streamlines the permitting process, and provides more flexibility and options for construction materials and technologies. It also seeks to promote energy efficiency and sustainability.

“For decades, there has been widespread recognition that Chicago should better align its construction requirements with model codes and standards used in other major U.S. cities,” said Building Commissioner Judy Frydland.

The changes will be phased in gradually, beginning on June 1 and completely replacing the current Building Code by August 1, 2020. The code modernization will not increase permit fees.

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About Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny serves as Senior Content Director for Connect Commercial Real Estate, a role to which he brings 13-plus years’ experience covering the commercial real estate industry and 30-plus years in business-to-business journalism. In this capacity, he oversees daily operations while also reporting on both local/regional markets and national trends, covering individual transactions across all property types, as well as delving into broader subject matter. He produces 15-20 daily news stories per day and works with the Connect team and clients to develop longer-form content, ranging from Q&As to thought-leadership pieces. Prior to joining Connect, Paul was Managing Editor for both Real Estate Forum and at American Lawyer Media, where he oversaw operations at both publications while also producing daily news and feature-length articles. His tenure in B2B publishing stretches back into the print era, and he has served as Editor in Chief on four national trade publications. Since 1999, Paul has volunteered as the newsletter editor of passenger rail advocacy groups (one national, one local).

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