The Building Safety Act will bring about a complete overhaul of the process for certain buildings at least 18 metres or seven storeys tall in England.
Although the scope of the Act goes beyond so-called “higher risk buildings” (a consultation on this definition has taken place recently), this article and associated download focuses on the stricter regimes governing relevant taller buildings.
We have updated the Government’s official timeline to highlight all the key dates changes expected to be introduced through the Act. While many details are still to be determined, this blog includes a closer look at what we do know about the new construction Gateways for higher-risk buildings.
When the Building Safety Act became law on 28th April 2022, the clock started ticking on a huge programme of change. The scope of the Act includes extra duties of care for building owners and operators, extra rights for residents, greater powers of enforcement and a raft of new regulations covering architects, building control functions and construction products.
Our downloadable presentation includes a timeline with expected dates for all the major changes. This timeline will be subject to change so keep checking back for the latest, or subscribe to our blog.
We also summarise key points regarding the three construction Gateways in relation to relevant higher-risk buildings.
Gateway 1 was introduced through planning legislation in August 2021. Although not part of the Building Safety Act, we refer to it here and in the download for completeness.
For all "relevant buildings", planning applications must include a fire statement to “support the consideration of information on fire safety matters as they relate to land use planning matters." The statement is not mandatory for outline planning applications.
In addition, the planning authority must consult with the Building Safety Regulator, which now sits with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). For this Gateway, a "relevant building" is one that contains at least two or contains educational accommodation and is either at least 18m high or has at least 7 storeys.
The Government intends that both Gateways 2 and 3 are introduced by October 2023.
Gateway 2 will replace the building control deposit plans stage for relevant buildings and will act as a stop/go point.
Building control approval will be obtained through the Building Safety Regulator and information covering duty holder competence, ”Golden Thread” data and strategies to minimise risk during construction must be submitted.
Gateway 3 marks the completion/final certificate stage once relevant building work is complete.
This will act as another stop/go point, contingent on further approval from and registration with the Building Safety Regulator. It will become an offence for buildings to be occupied without registration.
Plans and documents that reflect the “as-built” building must be submitted as part of the “Golden Thread” of information, so that they can be passed to the building owners or operators.
Premier Guarantee’s building control team continues to engage with the new Building Safety Regulator. It remains early days in the process but we know that many significant changes are coming, of which the construction Gateways are only one part.
We will report on Building Safety Act news as it comes and you can subscribe to receive email updates via our blog.
Visit the Building Safety Regulator for the latest updates.
A Government consultation is currently running until October 2022 on part 3 of the Building Safety Act covering the building control procedure for higher risk buildings.
Every care was taken to ensure the information in this article was correct at the time of publication (June 2022). Guidance provided does not replace the reader’s professional judgement and any construction project should comply with the relevant Building Regulations or applicable technical standards. For the most up to date Premier Guarantee technical guidance please refer to your Risk Management Surveyor and the latest version of the Premier Guarantee Technical Manual.