Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Balcony Enclosures?

Q: Is it permitted under any circumstance to enclose a Balcony? If so, are there any special considerations to such enclosures?

A: The Department permits lightweight, readily removable balcony enclosures, not considered a permanent part of the building. This is as per a DOB Memo dated 6/17/1976. Balcony enclosures shall comply with the following criteria:

1. The enclosure must be of lightweight, non-combustible construction.
2. The enclosure assembly must not include masonry or insulation.
3. The enclosure must contain operable windows to provide 10% light and 5% ventilation to both the balcony and the room opening onto the balcony.
4. The existing balcony parapet or railing must remain intact.
5. The enclosure shall be anchored and designed to resist Wind Loads and Lateral Loads.
6. Plumbing, heating, ventilation or air conditioning systems must not extend into the balcony (except for the mandatory retention of balcony drains)
7. Additional dead load consisting of flooring, subflooring or soil shall not be added to the balcony. Furniture shall be restricted to the lightweight "lawn type" variety.