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Working groups on the horizon for steel structures standard revision

Revision update for New Zealand’s main standard for the design and construction of steel structures, NZS 3404:1997: Parts 1 and 2 Steel structures standard.

Construction of steel structure

This standard has far-reaching applications for buildings, cranes, and road, rail and pedestrian bridges constructed of steel, composite steel and concrete. It supports compliance with the New Zealand Building Code (NZBC) and sets out the minimum requirements for the design, fabrication, erection, and modification of steelwork in structures in accordance with the limit state design method. As such, it is a core resource for engineers, builders, designers and building consent authorities.

What changes are in the scope?

The project began with scoping workshops in 2020, bringing together relevant stakeholders to discuss and agree on specific areas for change. Recommendations included correcting a number of errors, updating information, removing material that is duplicated in other standards and technical specifications, and simplifying and clarifying the standard to make it easier for more people to use. The revision will consider topics such as durability, retrofitting, repairability and inspection, as well as review sections on fire and seismic requirements, and potentially add content regarding sustainability and safety in design.

Next steps – committee formation and call for working group representatives

The Standards Approval Board has now approved the committee, with Kevin Cowie from Steel Construction New Zealand appointed as chair.

Kevin will be joined by representatives from the Australasian Corrosion Association, the Building Officials Institute of New Zealand, BRANZ, Engineering New Zealand, HERA, KiwiRail, the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and its Building System Performance unit, the Ministry of Education, the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering, Property Council New Zealand, the Registered Master Builders Association of New Zealand, the Structural Engineering Society New Zealand, the Sustainable Steel Council, Universities New Zealand, the University of Canterbury, and Waka Kotahi New Zealand Transport Agency. Nominations from two more organisations will be put forward for approval in March.

Working groups will be established to work through the scoped objectives. This will be an opportunity for more experts who are not committee members with specialist knowledge to get involved and share their expertise and knowledge. Email the project manager, Noreen MacMahon, for more information.

Future updates on the revision will be published in our Framing Up Building and Construction newsletter and Touchstone. Please subscribe to these newsletters via the link on our homepage.

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