Modular Building Institute

Discussion Forum

IIBC Commissioners Open the Door for Containers

Original Comment:
At the annual meeting of the Interstate Industrialized Building Commission (IIBC), the program Commissioners agreed to allow for used shipping containers as stand-alone units or to be incorporated into modular/industrialized buildings, provided the units are accompanied with an evaluation report from the ICC demonstrating compliance with Acceptance Criteria 462. The IIBC Program is the administrative program for the industry in New Jersey, Rhode Island, Minnesota, North Dakota, and Wisconsin.

Prior to today, the Commissioners resolved that used shipping containers would be prohibited from approval under the IIBC rules. After several years of debate and evidence presented by the industry and the ICC, the Commissioners finally agreed to allow containers to be used under these circumstances. The IIBC plans to issue a memo to its contracted third-party agencies announcing the change effective immediately.

MBI embarked on a nation-wide effort to help develop a path (or paths) for compliance for the safe use of modified shipping containers as buildings and building components. We felt this was necessary for a few reasons: 1) This is a growing segment within our industry, and 2) the codes and regulations (if any) varied wildly from state-to-state.

MBI worked with the National Portable Storage Association (NPSA) to develop an industry whitepaper to help code officials gain a better understanding of these products and how they could be used. We also wanted to set a base level of acceptable regulations to help ensure safety for end users.

The whitepaper can be viewed here.

The next steps for MBI are to work directly with the International Code Council (ICC) on developing a guideline for local code officials and to continue working with state administrative agencies to help shape and influence their regulations. This guideline would build upon the Acceptance Criteria developed and published by the ICC in 2016.
Started on July 20, 2017 by Tom Hardiman
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