2020 National Green Building Standard Is Now Available for Free Download

The 2020 edition of the ICC-700 National Green Building Standard (NGBS) has been approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and is available for public use. Having been developed over the past three years, this latest NGBS installment expands the scope of applicable building occupancies, keeps abreast of new technologies and advances the standard’s tradition as the industry benchmark for residential projects designed and built for high performance.

This fourth edition of NGBS brings together two industry leaders — the International Code Council and the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) — who took on a leadership role to commission an independent consensus committee of a broad range of stakeholders charged with the development of the next generation of the NGBS. Home Innovation Research Labs served as secretariat, or administrator, of an ANSI-approved standard development process, as it has done in previous iterations.

First published in 2009, the NGBS provides a pathway by which builders and developers may seek third-party certification of new homes, multifamily and mixed-use buildings, developments, and remodeling projects. In addition, builders and consumers whose projects are NGBS-certified may be eligible for federal or state incentives. As of April 2020, more than 216,000 residential dwellings have been certified to the Standard through NGBS Green — a national third-party certification program administered by Home Innovation Research Labs.

The 2020 edition builds upon years of experience of building and certifying to the NGBS. Significant changes include:

  • An expanded scope that now includes compliance for the nonresidential portion of mixed-use buildings as long as the residential portion of the building is greater than 50 percent of gross floor area (previous editions defined criteria only for the residential portion of the project)
  • An expanded scope that also includes assisted living facilities, residential board and care facilities, and group homes
  • A new Chapter 12: Certified Compliance Path for Single-Family Homes, Townhomes and Duplexes, that provides a new compliance path customized for single-family dwellings
  • A new water efficiency performance path that demonstrates compliance using an index that generates a score relative to a standard baseline home
  • An option to utilize a phased approach for multifamily remodeling projects
  • A range of updated performance baselines and references
  • And, a substantially revised remodeling chapter that offers a choice of prescriptive or performance compliance paths for energy and water efficiency

“The 2020 NGBS takes a leap forward by adding new provisions for mixed-use residential buildings that are so popular in urban and suburban communities,” said NAHB Chairman Dean Mon, a home builder and developer from Shrewsbury, N.J. “NGBS continues in its tradition of providing builders with the flexibility and choices in meeting market preferences for green building and staying relevant to our customers.”

“Green building and sustainable construction solutions help to maintain the health and safety benefits that building codes and standards provide for communities worldwide,” said Code Council Chief Executive Officer Dominic Sims, CBO. “The updated NGBS ICC-700 provides designers, contractors, developers and policymakers with the tools and blueprint for green construction strategies and practices. These tools also aid occupant comfort and health, save money and preserve resources during the design, construction and operation of buildings.”

The NGBS provides the roadmap for residential professionals to integrate green features at the most appropriate level for their businesses and housing markets. Whether new to high-performance building or a seasoned veteran, builders, and remodelers can rely on the 2020 NGBS to help achieve their goals for high-performance buildings. Individuals can download a complimentary PDF copy.

Source: International Code Council

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