Building Codes

Louisiana State Uniform Construction Code

Background:
In the wake of the Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, major emphasis was placed on Louisiana to look for solutions to mitigate future storm damage. The federal government, especially, was looking to the state to show responsibility in rebuilding after the disasters. Insurers were still reeling from the enormity of the hurricanes and were looking to the state to take positive steps to ensure rebuilding efforts focused on minimizing future losses. During the first legislative special session after the 2005 hurricanes, a coalition of statewide trade associations and business leaders, called Constructing A Stronger Louisiana, supported legislation for a much-needed uniform statewide building and residential code.

Legislative Action:
The legislation passed overwhelmingly and established one of the strongest construction codes in the nation. The legislation accomplished the following:

  • A statewide uniform construction code to govern the design, construction, and inspection of residential and commercial buildings based on nationally recognized standards of the International Residential Code.
  • The Louisiana State Uniform Construction Codes Council (LSUCCC) made up of 19 appointed people with various professional backgrounds including construction, engineering, architecture, insurance and local government to review and adopt state building codes; provide training, education and certification of code officials, plan reviewers and inspectors; and accept requests for amendments to the code review.
  • Gave enforcement responsibility of the code to the local governments.

Current Situation:
A uniform building code in Louisiana demonstrates the progress the state has made in its commitment to rebuilding Louisiana safer and better. One code followed by all parishes and municipalities in the state shows that Louisiana is in step with the rest of the nation when it comes to safer and more durable construction.

The uniform building code has also promoted economic development in the state. Companies looking to do business in Louisiana wanted predictability in the rules that govern construction. Companies building businesses or operations centers in the state now find wherever the business takes them, one building code is enforced throughout the state. In addition, the uniform building code has allowed homebuilders in the state to build in any parish or municipality. This assists in minimizing the wait time of homeowners, especially in the storm-ravaged areas of the state, in getting their homes rebuilt.

When a person builds a house in the United States, it is built with the life expectancy of 80 years. The Louisiana’s uniform construction code used in building homes is the best available because it has been researched and tested by highly skilled industry professionals. A home built in Louisiana and under the statewide construction code will last its full 80 years.

Resources:
Louisiana Statewide Uniform Construction Code Council