CHAPTER 10: TECHNICAL CRITERIA
(NFPA) Life Safety Code have been adopted by GSA in lieu of the egress
requirements of the national model building code that is used. (See the
latest edition of the GSA Facilities Standards for the Public Buildings Service
for additional code and standard requirements.)
Locate centers either in a dedicated child care center building, or on the
This chapter provides criteria for the design and construction
first floor (i.e., level of exit discharge) of a building either along an outside
of elements and systems throughout the center, and discusses
wall with window access to the exterior, or along a courtyard with window
access. Centers adjacent to a courtyard must have approved means of
egress out of the courtyard itself to an area of safety. Centers shall not be
10.1 Fire Protection,
located below the building's level of exit discharge.
Environmental, and Safety
Exception: Portions of centers located one story above the level of exit
discharge in which only pre-school children (24 months or greater in
age) occupy the space.
10.1.5 Means of Egress Requirements:
The egress requirements of the NFPA Life Safety Code shall be used in
lieu of the requirements in the national model building code.
This section provides the technical design criteria that GSA Child Care
Centers must meet. The majority of the fire protection, environmental, and
safety requirements are contained in numerous national codes and
Each center shall have at least two means of egress, which may exit via
standards. Compliance with national codes and standards are explained,
protected corridors, with the required fire separations.
and areas where GSA's requirements differ from referenced national codes
Panic hardware or fire exit hardware shall only be installed on means of
and standards are delineated.
egress doors serving more than 100 persons.
No dead-end corridor shall exceed 20 feet (6.1 meters).
No common path of travel shall exceed 75 feet (23 meters).
As explained in Chapter 2, GSA will convene a "design workshop," to which
The travel distance between any room door intended as an exit access
all interested stakeholders shall be invited. Specifically, the design
and an exit shall not exceed 100 feet (30 meters).
workshops shall include representation from all appropriate regional safety
The travel distance between any point in a room and an exit shall not
professionals (i.e., fire protection engineers, environmental engineers,
exceed 150 feet (45 meters).
industrial hygienists, and occupational safety and health professionals).
The travel distance between any point in a sleeping room and an exit
The GSA regional safety professionals shall have the right to revise the
access door in that room shall not exceed 50 feet (15 meters).
specific requirements within this section based on a technical evaluation/
In dedicated child care center buildings, where possible, each class-
analysis and the project's specific needs.
room and activity room shall be provided with one direct exit to the out-
10.1.3 National Codes and Standards:
Doors within the center shall be arranged to be opened readily from the
For new construction center projects and renovation center projects, GSA
egress side whenever the center is occupied. Locks, if provided, shall
shall, to the maximum extent feasible, comply with one of the nationally
not require the use of a key, a tool, or special knowledge or effort for
recognized model building codes and with other applicable nationally
operation from the egress side. All locking arrangements shall meet
recognized codes. In addition, for all new construction and renovation
the requirements of the latest edition of the NFPA Life Safety Code.
projects, the egress requirements of the National Fire Protection Association
PBS-140 - July 2003