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Architectural Standards

Review Design Standards General Statements before utilizing this web page.


Requirements
Laws
Executive Orders (EOs)
Building Codes & Industry Standards
Government Directives & Government Standards
National Park Service (NPS) Requirements
Professional Guidance
Resources


Requirements

For Accessibility and Universal Design requirements, see the Accessibility and Universal Design Standards.


Laws


Executive Orders (EOs)


Building Codes & Industry Standards

  • International Building Code (IBC) 2012, with Appendices (replace Chapter 34 with IEBC)
  • International Existing Building Code (IEBC) 2012, with Appendices and Resource A
  • For Accessibility Compliance for Multi-Family Residences Under Fair Housing Act use:
    • ANSI A117.1 2003 (Accessible and Usable Buildings and Facilities)
    • IBC 2003, Chapter 10 (Dwelling Units and Sleeping Units)
    • IBC 2003, Chapter 11 (Accessibility)
  • International Plumbing Code (IPC) 2012, Chapter 11 (Roofing Systems)
  • ASCE 7-10 (American Society of Civil Engineers) Minimum Design Loads for Buildings and Other Structures (Roofing Systems)

Government Directives & Government Standards


National Park Service (NPS) Requirements

Management Policies

Management Policies 2006 - The Guide to Managing the National Park System

Secretary of the Interior's Standards

Director's Orders (DOs)

Handbooks, Reference Manuals (RMs) and other Professional Materials

Denver Service Center (DSC) Requirements

Restrooms

  • Restroom Accessories: Accessible public restrooms or accessible single-use/family restrooms must comply with ABAAS. Select and install accessories meeting accessibility standards and harmonizing with a park's facilities standards or preferences.
  • Privacy Partitions and Screens: Restrooms with manufactured privacy partitions shall have floor mounted systems in lieu of overhead (suspended) systems. Combination floor and wall support partitions are inherently more stable and durable. In addition, partition panels must be: nominal 1" (min.) thickness; capable of receiving surface-mount, semi-recessed or recessed accessories; vandal/graffiti resistant materials and finishes; and be repairable and capable of refinishing. Hardware and anchors shall be concealed to a practicable extent. Use durable and tamper-proof hardware and connectors. Natural stone materials and hollow metal partitions are not permitted. DSC acknowledges that in some situations alternative privacy screens or systems may be necessary. The basis for an alternative proposal shall be presented during the schematic design phase, and explained in the preferred alternative design submittal. Alternatives will be reviewed and accepted on a case-by-case basis.
  • Accessible Products, Fixtures and Equipment: Manufacturers offer claims about products meeting ADA requirements. The US Access- Board, the federal agency administering ADA and ABA programs for accessibility, does not certify products, materials or manufacturers for compliance with accessibility standards. Accessibility qualifications are independent claims by manufacturers or suppliers that choose to self-certify products. The burden of proof rests with the project design team to confirm that any item required to be accessible will comply with ABAAS.

Roofing Systems

  • General
    • Wind load as calculated using ASCE 7
    • Determination of fire rated roof Classification.
    • Roof drainage as calculated using IPC or other established sources.
    • Determine dew point location in roof assembly and vapor barrier needs.
    • Specialty roofs evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

  • Architectural Metal Flashing, Condensation Control, and Reroofing Systems: Consult NRCA Roofing Manual (2010)

  • Green Roof Systems:
    • The NRCA Vegetative Roof Systems Manual, Second Edition
    • The NRCA Green Roof Systems Manual-2007 Edition

  • Membrane Roof Systems: Consult NRCA Roofing Manual (2011)
    • SBS Modified Bitumen Roof System
      • Specify 2-ply system where roofing products, including each type of sheet, are all manufactured in the United States, supplied by a single manufacturer which has been successfully producing the specified types of primary products with the same materials without making adjustments, modifications or alterations to the chemical or physical composition of the products for not less than the specified warranty period.
      • Specify a 20 year system and require a 15-year System Roofing Manufacturer's Warranty for labor and material, without monetary limitation, to correct defects in materials or workmanship. Warranty shall contain no exclusions for random occurrences of ponding water.
      • APA systems are not permitted.
      • Specify SBS roof systems where high puncture resistance, exposure to abuse or frequent access is needed on the roof to maintain mechanical equipment.
      • Specify torch down and adhesive systems, avoid hot mop asphalt.
      • Specify a dense, fire and water resistance cover board made from gypsum or other man made materials to be placed over the deck or insulation board. Use adhesive to attach cover board to insulation.
      • Specify cant strips and curbs to be pressure treated wood unless metal curbs are used. Fiber products are not permitted.
      • Specify a pre-manufactured 2-piece counterflashing; coping system; roof edge/fascia system; and mechanical equipment curbs.
      • Minimum roof pitch of 1/4"/ft and 1/8"/ft along valleys.
      • Install stepping stone pavers with shims on low slope roof surfaces along a path from the roof hatch to mechanical equipment requiring cyclic maintenance, installed with a sufficient area to limit damage to finished roof system from foot traffic and service tools/equipment.
    • Single-Ply Membrane Roof System:
      • Specify roofing products, all manufactured in the United States, supplied by a single manufacturer which has been successfully producing the specified types of primary products with the same materials without making adjustments, modifications or alterations to the chemical or physical composition of the products for not less than the warranty period.
      • Specify a 20 year system and require a 15-year System Roofing Manufacturer's Warranty for labor and material, without monetary limitation, to correct defects in materials or workmanship. Warranty shall contain no exclusions for random occurrences of ponding water.
      • Specify PVC (60 mil minimum thickness) and EIP (45 mil minimum thickness) systems to be mechanically attached. Roof membrane is visible from ground shall be fully adhered.
      • EPDM systems shall be fully adhered 60 mil thickness, using 7" wide tape seams, and be warranted for 20 years.
      • TPO membranes shall not be specified.
      • Specify single-ply roof system when foot traffic is minimal, roof shape is complex or when numerous roof penetrations are present.
      • Specify a dense, fire and water resistance cover board made from gypsum or other man made materials to be placed over the deck or insulation board. Use adhesive to attach cover board to insulation.
      • Specify a pre-manufactured 2-piece counterflashing; coping system; roof edge/fascia system; and mechanical equipment curbs.
      • Minimum roof pitch of 1/4"/ft and 1/8"/ft along valleys.
      • Install stepping stone pavers with shims on low slope roof surfaces along a path from the roof hatch to mechanical equipment requiring cyclic maintenance, installed with a sufficient area to limit damage to finished roof system from foot traffic and service tools/equipment.

  • Metal Panel Roof Systems: Consult NRCA Roofing Manual (2012)
    • Specify metal roof manufacturers who offer Full System Manufacturer's Roofing Warranty for 20-year labor and material warranty for the installed cost of roof and to repair leaks in the roof panels, flashing and trim resulting from defects in materials or workmanship. Roof manufacturers shall be required to inspect the work during construction (i.e. AEPS span-weather tightness, Berridge-Total Single Source, MBCJ-single source III, etc.).
    • Verify with manufacturer their underlayment requirement for the 20-year warranty.
    • Steep roof (hydrokinetic) roofs shall pass air and water infiltration tests per ASTM E1646 and E1680. Low slope (hydrostatic) roofs shall pass water infiltration tests per ASTM E2140. Submit test report.
    • Specify Kynar 500 or Hylar 5000 paint finish on metal panels which require paint.
    • Specify 22 gauge galvalume/zincalume and/or galvanized metal roofs. For structures located in coast regions use 0.040" aluminum or 20 oz copper. For high profile structures, use any of the above 3 materials.
    • For architectural panel roofs, specify snap type standing or batten seam with continuous length panels. Panel should be kept off substrate by manufacturer's clips. Double lock standing seams should only be used in high snow areas where snow will accumulate on the roof over the winter.
    • For structural or structural/architectural panel roofs, specify concealed fasteners and clips for panel attachment. No fasteners shall be located in the pan of the panel except at the ridge.
    • Panels and trim shall be rolled formed at the manufacturer's prime manufacturing plant.
    • Specify manufactured prepared shop drawing on a minimum 24" by 36" sheet.
    • Metal shingles and shingle panels to be used on steep slope (3:12 or greater). Investigate the bottom, top and side of each shingle to determine the interlocking mechanism and watertightness of the lap, joint and seam. Examine ridge, valley, hip and perimeter flashings profiles for watertightness. These products maybe problematic on roofs that retain snow for long periods of time.
    • Specify rosin paper slip sheet under all architectural metal roofs.
    • In snow/ice climates or as required for warranty, specify fully adhered moisture protection underlayment extending from the eave to 3 feet from the inside face of the exterior wall, at valleys, ridges and along dormer or other walls. Use cold roof design technology when possible.
    • Specify self-adhered high temperature underlayment.

  • Metal Shingle Roof Systems: Consult NRCA Roofing Manual (2013)

  • Steep-slope Roof Systems: Consult NRCA Roofing Manual (2013)
    • Asphalt Shingle Roof Systems
      • Specify a 2-ply laminated shingle, conforming to ASTM D3462, with a minimum 50-year material warranty and a minimum 15-year non-prorated labor and material water-tightness warranty.
      • In humid and wet climates, specify algae resistant shingles.
      • In hailstorm areas, specify impact resistance shingles passing an UL 2218 test for Class 3 or 4.
      • In high wind areas, (greater than 90 mph) specify wind resistant shingles rating to wind speed determined by ASCE 7, and require a 10-year wind warranty.
      • In snow/ice climates, specify fully adhered moisture protection underlayment extending from the eave to 3 feet from the inside face of the exterior wall, at valleys, ridges and along dormer or other walls. Use cold roof design technology if possible.
      • Fasten shingles with minimum 12 gauge corrosion resistant nails only. Minimum nail head diameter shall be 3/8". Shank shall penetrate minimum of 3/4" in wood decking or completely through plywood decking.
      • Asphalt-saturated felt underlayment shall meet ASTM D 226 and/or D 4869. Use double layers on roof slopes less than 4:12.
      • Specify roof perimeter edge metal and step flashing at walls and chimneys.
      • Minimum slope 3:12.
      • Specify open, closed, or woven valleys.
    • Clay and Concrete Tile Roof Systems
      • Specify clay tile manufacturers who offer a 20-year labor and material warranty for the installed cost of roof and to replace defective tiles resulting from defects in materials or workmanship.
      • Clay Tile shall meet or exceed ASTM C1167 Grade 1 requirements for durability and ASTM C1167 Type I, for appearance.
      • Concrete tile shall meet or exceed ASTM C1492 requirements.
      • In freeze/thaw climates specify clay tile manufacturers who have tiles with a moisture absorption rate of less than 1% per ASTM C67. Concrete tile shall have a minimum compressive strength of 7500 psi, shall not have more than 1% loss in dry weight per ASTM C67 and not absorb more than 8% of the dry weight in ASTM C140 immersion test.
      • Specify 2 layers of 30# asphalt-saturated felt underlayment meeting ASTM D 226 and/or D 4869.
      • In snow/ice climates or as required for warranty, specify fully adhered moisture protection underlayment extending from the eave to 3 feet from the inside face of the exterior wall, at valleys, ridges and along dormer or other walls. Use cold roof design technology if possible.
      • In hailstorm areas, specify manufacturers who provide a minimum 10-year hail warranty covering material replacement of damaged tiles.
    • Slate Roof Systems
      • Specify slate tile manufacturers who provide a 75-year material warranty. The installer shall provide a 5-year leak proof warranty for the installed cost of the roof and to replace defective flashings and tiles resulting from defects in materials or workmanship.
      • Specify slate manufacturers whose products meet ASTM C406 and can certify their slate to a Grade S1 classification by providing test results which are not more than 3 years old.
      • Specify 3/8" minimum thick slate in freeze/thaw, high wind or heavy hail areas, 1/4" minimum thick slate in other areas. Avoid slate from Pennsylvania.
      • Specify two layers of 30# asphalt-saturated felt underlayment meeting ASTM D 226 and/or D 4869 or one layer of fully adhered moisture protection 40 mil minimum butyl-adhesive based underlayment. Use a 3" minimum headlap for roof slopes between 4:12 to 8:12.
      • In snow/ice climates, specify fully adhered moisture protection 40 mil minimum butyl-adhesive based underlayment extending from the eave to 3 feet from the inside face of the exterior wall, at valleys, ridges and along dormer or other walls. Use cold roof design technology if possible.
      • Specify 10 gauge copper slating nails, stainless steel, bronze or cut-brace roof nails and fasten with 2 nails per slate. In high wind areas or when 3/4" or thicker slate is used, fasten with 4 nails per slate.
      • Provide eave cant for starter course.
      • Flashings shall be fabricated from 20 oz. copper or 24 gage stainless steel. Open valley pan shall be formed with a "W" or "V" shaped splash diverter.
    • Wood Shake and Wood Shingle Roof Systems
      • National Parks are slowly transitioning away from wood products as a result of increased fire danger throughout the west, the limited availability of domestic supplied material, and the reduce life expectancy of the product in many parts of the country. However, in some cases historic preservation standards may dictate the use of these products.
      • Specify No. 1 premium official blue label western red cedar shingle; premium grade western red cedar shake; or pressure treated No. 1 vertical grain, all clear yellow pine shingle.
      • Specify one layer (for shingles) or two layers (for shakes) of 15# asphalt-saturated felt underlayment meeting ASTM D 226 and/or D 4869 or one layer of fully adhered ice and water protection 40 mil minimum butyl-adhesive based underlayment. The second layer of felt is interlaced between courses when installing shakes.
      • In snow/ice climates, specify fully adhered moisture protection 40 mil minimum butyl-adhesive based underlayment extending from the eave to 3 feet from the inside face of the exterior wall, at valleys, ridges and along dormers or other walls. Use cold roof design technology if possible.
      • Use a 3 layer starter course for roofs with each course hanging over the lower one by 1/4".
      • Specify a minimum 4:12 pitch roof, prefer a 5:12 minimum pitch and shingle widths between 3 and 9 inches.
      • Specify copper or zinc sheets at ridge in humid climates to reduce moss growth.
      • Hand-nail shakes and shingles. Nail guns and staples are not allowed.

Signage

  • Project sign types must address needs for comprehensive signage, to include: accessible (tactile and visual signage per ABAAS), exit (code mandated for safety and egress), exhibit/interpretive (when necessary), park signs (park entrance, vehicular, trail, and facility/identity/destination signs), and custom signage. Historical signage must be identified and protected per NPS resource treatment guidelines. Design must harmonize new signs with existing, custom and historic signage.

Waterproofing Systems

  • Specify waterproofing products, all manufactured in the United States, supplied by a single manufacturer which has been successfully producing the specified types of primary products with the same materials without making adjustments, modifications or alterations to the chemical or physical composition of the products for not less than the warranty period.
  • Specify a minimum 10-year Manufacturer's Warranty for labor and material, without monetary limitation, to correct defects in materials or workmanship. Warranty shall contain no exclusions for random occurrences of ponding water.
  • Specify the use of certified contractors to apply the waterproofing system and that the work be inspected by the manufacturer at a minimum of once a week during installation.
  • Select waterproofing systems that are typically used on substrates as stated in the manufacturer's literature.

Professional Guidance

Resources

Products and Materials

  • Division 3 - Concrete
    • Consider sustainable practices such as using flyash in concrete mixture where appropriate to reduce cement content.
  • Division 4 - Masonry
    • Consider "life-cycle assessment" when selecting masonry products.
  • Division 5 - Metals
    • Avoid using "COR-TEN Steel" products on buildings. Runoff from this product stains surfaces when coming in contact and adds pollutants to soils and ground water.
  • Division 6 - Wood, Plastic and Composites
    • For sustainability, consider using "Certified Forest Products" as designated by the Forest Stewardship Council, if appropriate for project and cost effective.
    • If appropriate for project and cost effective, consider using agro board / bio products for interior fiberboard/plywood products applications (particleboard made from renewable products such as wheat, straw, sunflower hulls, etc.).
    • If appropriate for project and cost effective, consider recycled plastic products for interior applications such as countertops.
  • Division 7 - Thermal and Moisture Protection
    • See DSC Requirements (above).
    • Consideration for pest management should be given in the designing and detailing the building envelope to eliminate holes, gaps and cracks for rodent and pest intrusions.
  • Division 8 - Openings
    • Door and window selection should be based on improved thermal performance.
    • Verify with park when selecting architectural hardware. As a standard in most NPS parks, all keyed locks in a project should be keyed to the "Best" lock system.
    • Glazing for each building elevations should be selected based on building orientation and improved thermal performance.
    • Consideration for pest management should be given in the selection of door sweeps, thresholds, frame gaskets and seals and insect screens for operable windows.
  • Division 9 - Finishes
    • Select products that require low maintenance and are durable.
    • If appropriate and cost effective, consider using "Green" products when selecting products
  • Division 10 - Specialties
    • Select products that require low maintenance and are durable (ie. toilet partitions).
    • All communication (telephone, radio, alarms) systems must be coordinated with the park staff.
  • Division 11 - Equipment
    • Verify with park the need for any specialized equipment.
  • Division 12 - Furnishings
    • If appropriate, consider using "Green" products when selecting furnishings.
    • Consider using door mats at all main or key entrances for improved indoor air quality.
  • Division 13 - Special Construction
    • If appropriate and cost effective, consider Solar/ Wind Turbine Systems for power generation.
    • If appropriate and cost effective, consider Building Automation System (Energy Management System) for efficient energy monitoring.
  • Division 14 - Conveying Systems
    • All Federal facilities must comply with ABAAS. The use of elevators or wheelchair/stair lifts may be required for some facilities.
    • If appropriate and cost effective, consider using vegetable-based hydraulic fluid elevator system.
    • If appropriate and cost effective, consider sustainable and energy efficient elevator design technology for elevators in low rise applications.
    • Hoists or cranes may be required for some maintenance facilities. Avoid designing open work pits in maintenance facilities due to safety hazard.
 

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