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Staying in Compliance with Boston Facade Ordinance 9.9‐12 & Facade Safety Certification

Updated: Feb 4, 2021

The heart of our cities is the structures we build. Progress is measured by new developments popping out of the skyline. From the John Hancock Tower in Clarendon Street to the Prudential Building in Boylston Street to the Millennium Tower in Franklin Street, our creations have reached increasingly impressive heights. But, as we build toward the sky, ensuring safety on the ground has become more important than ever.

Façade collapse is nothing new. There have been several reported cases of people getting injured and even losing their lives to façade falling off buildings. Every day, thousands of people walk on sidewalks lined by enormous structures and rely on “Boston FacadeOrdinance9.9‐12” to regulate building safety. The Ordinance has made building inspections mandatory for building owners and property managers to ensure their structures are safe, as well as obtaining façade safety certification in Boston.

What Is Boston Façade Ordinance 9.9‐12?

The Boston FacadeOrdinance9.9‐12 (Inspection of Exterior Walls and Appurtenances of Buildings Requiring Periodic Inspection) has become a high priority for public safety and regulations are often implemented in response to catastrophes. According to this ordinance, occupied high-rise structures (buildings that are greater than 70 feet in height), must be inspected once every 5 years—and every year if the building is unoccupied. The Inspectional Services Department (ISD) Commissioner, after receiving satisfactory proof of façade inspection and a report that suggests safe condition, issues an Exterior Wall certificate to the owner/manager of the occupied/unoccupied building.

Why Does Boston Façade Safety Certification Matter?

Façade safety certification in Boston, MA carries a lot of significance for owners and property managers of high-rise buildings as it renews the occupied building for the next 5 years. No structure referenced in the said section can be occupied without this certificate. Occupancy without a valid certificate is a punishable offense and might lead to a fine of one hundred ($100.00) dollars for each day that such violation continues.

Regular Building Inspections Are Critical

In Boston, we have more than 250 high-rise buildings, out of which nearly 30 buildings are more than 400 feet tall. Many are nearing the end of their useful life and continuing to degrade due to weather conditions and other factors. Building inspections are a great way to stay in compliance with the Boston Façade Ordinance and increase the life of your investments.

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