It’s a wake up call for some local leaders whose cities house scores of high-rise buildings. In the wake of the condo collapse in Surfside, Florida, Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop is tightening safety rules on buildings in an effort to avoid a disaster like the one still playing out.
Fulop says the new legislation, which will be presented to City Council on Wednesday, July 12, will require a structural engineer to inspect the façades of buildings in Jersey City every five years. It will also require a structural inspection every 10 years. According to the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs, multifamily buildings are inspected every five years for maintenance but not by an engineer. They look for “habitability provisions for heat, infestation and lead hazards in specific conditions. Inspectors also perform a visual, nondestructive inspection of accessible foundation/structural members.” The department added, “if they notice something that looks questionable for structural purposes, they would alert the building owner and the local construction official.”