Facilities Planning

Newsletter 79 – September 2006

Get to Know us Better:

David Seidner has recently joined the architectural staff after about 20 years in private practice as an architect and project manager.  David has designed and worked on numerous residential and commercial projects throughout the Capital District.

David lives in Guilderland with his wife, Pya (who is a calligrapher) and his daughter, Alexa, who enters high school this year.

David’s passion for building things extends in many directions.  After converting a barn and tractor shed into a home for his family, the opportunity presented itself to build another home, after he lost his home and most of his belongings during Hurricane Floyd due to severe flooding back in 1999.  David had taken on the task of clearing the building lot, building the road and building most of the home, including the radiant floor heating system.  The new home is under perpetual construction, when finished it will be a craftsman shingle style bungalow, with most parts being hand crafted.  “Don’t let an architect design and build their own home, it becomes a huge play set.”

Other current projects that have been started (not finished) are a saw mill, biodiesel processor, and craftsman style light fixtures for the house.  In his free time (what’s that?!) he enjoys riding his motorcycle, fixing all his cars, cabinetry work and spending time with his family and their two Russian Wolfhounds.

Fire Safety of Press Boxes:

Press Boxes are no longer limited to football fields.  Many school districts have multiple Press Boxes within the district.  The SED requirements for construction of Press Boxes are found on our web site at http://www.p12.nysed.gov/facplan/articles/F04.htm.  What most people don’t realize is that since ALL Press Boxes were required to be built to this standard then these same standards are retroactive for ALL existing Press boxes.  


Fire Safety Inspectors should be looking for the following:

  • The maximum occupancy on each floor level shall be determined on the basis of 15 square feet per person. Appropriate signs limiting occupancy must be posted.
  • Exiting is provided as required by the building code.  The primary exit shall be a conventional stair, a 60-degree ships ladder, or a four foot minimum diameter spiral stair.  Noncombustible bleachers or grandstands may also be used for primary exiting.  Exit stairs need not be enclosed, however, consideration should be given to local concerns for the prevention of vandalism.
  • Additionally, SED requires a remote second means of egress to be provided from each floor level, this includes the roof when it is a useable platform.  The second means of egress from the interior may be through a rescue window or panel with a minimum clear opening area of six square feet and a minimum dimension of 24 inches.  A rescue window is to have a vertical ladder or access directly to bleachers or grandstands as the second means of egress.
  • The primary exit from a useable roof is not allowed to be a conventional vertical ladder.   The exit options are the same as the interior of the press box.  A second means of egress is also required from the roof when it is a useable platform.  A vertical ladder or retractable egress ladder is minimally required for a second means of egress from the roof.
  • Guardrails and toe boards are required at all openings and open sides of stairs.  Handrails are required on one side of stairs and both sides of ships ladders.
  • Hardware on exit doors shall be at least classroom function.  No dead bolts or padlock hasps are allowed on any Press Box.


Heating Season Already:

Is summer really over?  As of September 23rd this year, oh well.  The Codes of New York State set no maximum temperature for interior spaces to address the high temperatures of summer.  But, there is a Minimum Temperature for Schools that is required to be maintained as the weather becomes cooler, and the weather is already cool enough in most areas of the state.  The minimum temperature in occupied buildings is 65 degrees and it must be maintained from September 15th through May 31st.  This is a requirement of the Property Maintenance Code of New York State, Section 602.4.  Buildings with ongoing construction projects must also meet this requirement for occupied portions of their buildings where there are students and/or staff.

Heating Season is here already.  We hope everyone has inspected their heating systems and provided necessary maintenance over the summer.  If not, now is the time.  This is also the last chance to send in a submission for capital construction work for heating systems.  Please let us know if there is a project in Facilities Planning that you need completed for your heating needs.  We can work with your architect and engineer to help you attain the approval so the work can begin.

An Index of our Newsletters is available on our web site at http://www.p12.nysed.gov/facplan/NewsLetters.htm.

If you would like to have this Newsletter sent directly to you by e-mail, please send your e-mail address to Joe Levy at jlevy@mail.nysed.gov.

Please continue to send in your comments and requests.  If you have a subject you would like addressed, feedback on the material you read, input or general comments we are happy to hear from you.

Last Updated: June 15, 2009