This case study outlines how six organisations have come together to form a knowledge sharing group as they tackle the challenge of high risk building registration, along with the development and maintenance of a digital building safety case.
With the legislation being new and still to be fully defined, all parties saw an excellent opportunity to share ideas and feedback as early adopters of new technology, with a new way of working.
The agreed key Outcomes from the knowledge share group:
- Peace of mind that each local authority is doing the right things, with feedback from the regulator.
- Feedback from the regulator and users to ensure Operance continues to be fit for purpose – shapes the Operance development roadmap to improve platform.
- Shareable case studies from successful projects.
- Lessons learnt/increased knowledge from different projects – New build/Referbs & existing buildings.
The Members of the Group:
Harrow are taking their obligations very seriously, currently redeveloping Mount Farm phase 1, which they have identified as the pilot scheme to implement a new way of working to meet the needs of the new legislation.
Higgins are the principal contractor on the Mount Farm Project, Higgins a forward thinking and experienced tier 1 contractor identified Operance as an excellent solution after working with them on a previous scheme.
Potter Raper are the project managers on Mount Farm, with a team of highly skilled and technically astute PMs, they will also be utilising the Operance Platform on behalf of the council.
Basildon are also taking their obligations very seriously and understand they need a new way of working to meet the legislative requirements.Their proof of concept projects are a new refurbishment of Brook House and the recently completed refurbishment of Acorn House. Both HRBs. The interesting nature of these schemes are that one is an existing building that has already been completed, the other is just about to start, so new building information will be generated.
Morgan Sindall Property Services
Morgan Sindall Property Services are the long term partner to Basildon Council, the principle maintenance contractor for the building estate. Their role will be to administer the Operance platform on behalf of the council. MSPS undertook a detailed market analysis to find and procure the right technology partner to help deliver the projects from a building information perspective.
Operance is the worlds first purpose built golden thread software platform. Designed to be the single source of truth for building information. Operance has been selected as the platform of choice for the 3 HRB projects mentioned above.
The new Building Safety Act 2022 dictates that by managing Higher Risk Buildings (HRBs: buildings that are 18m or 7 story’s high, and, have at least 2 residential units), Developers, Designers, contractors and Landlords will need to take all reasonable steps to prevent any building safety incidents and reduce the severity of an incident, should one occur. Together, they must:
- Register buildings with the Building Safety Regulator (BSR) by October 2024, beginning in April.
- Perform a building safety risk assessment.
- Introduce measures to manage building safety risks.
- Develop and maintain a digitally held building Safety Case, an extensive collection of building safety information, with the Building Assessment Certificate (BAC) process expected to begin in April 2024.
- Prepare a Safety Case Report for their building to give to BSR on request.
Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022 and Article 24 of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (Fire Safety Order), also dictate that responsible persons of HRBs and buildings that are above 11m high provide information to Fire and Rescue Services to assist them to plan and, if needed, provide an effective operational response, and, provide additional safety measures and information such as;
- Building plans
- External wall systems
- Lifts and other key fire-fighting equipment
- Fire door specifications, quarterly checks and sharing of information relating to the importance of fire doors in fire safety to residents.
These Fire Safety regulations came into force on 23 January 2023. The key challenge with these new laws, which are still to be fully defined is how best to comply and reduce the organisational risks associated with the development and ownership of high risk buildings.
All three projects have implemented the Operance Platform in the first quarter of 2023.
The outcomes that Operance enable are:
- Golden Thread of Information: developed throughout design and construction, this information will be handed over to the building owner on completion and further developed over the lifetime of the building. This information will ensure that the right people have the right information at the right time to ensure buildings are safe, and risks are managed effectively.
- Golden Thread Audit Trail: events relevant to building, fire, structural and MEP safety are tracked on our immutable ledger, for a lifecycle history log.
- HRB Registration: All occupied high-rise residential buildings will need to be registered with the Building Safety Regulator. To do this, the Accountable Person provides the regulator with key details of buildings (e.g. address, height, number of flats), and information about the Accountable Person(s) and any nominated individuals.
- Safety Case: all the information you use to manage the risk of fire spread, structural safety how to prevent fire spread and structural failure, limiting their consequences.
- Safety Case Report: a summary of your safety case, identifying a building’s major fire and structural hazards, and, how to manage the risks as far as you can. This also includes information about your responsible persons, their competences and descriptions of how risks and safety management system are managed.
- Operations and Maintenance (O&M) Manual: manufacturer/supplier information on how to operate and maintain the facilities systems, assets and components.
- Health and Safety (H&S) File: contractor/designer/consultant information relevant to the safe operation, development, decommission and demolition of the facility.
- As-Built Designs: architectural, civils, structural, mechanical, electrical, landscaping and specialist drawings reflecting the current ‘as-built’ state of the building.
- Certificates and Reports: statutory compliance information, fire safety and building fabric testing, MEP testing and commissioning and completion agreements.
- Warranties and Guarantees: legal agreements between the supplier/manufacturer of assets, components and systems and the building owner.
- Building User Guide (BUG): a simple, quick and easy guide to the everyday functions of the building in order to ensure a safe and healthy work environment while complimenting the efficient operation of the building to its full potential.
- Building Log Book (BLB): a legal requirement in new buildings and in existing buildings where services are changed and how a building’s energy consumption and construction details are recorded and analysed to support informed decisions.
The group has agreed to share progress and feedback on a monthly basis. Having recently invited the Regulator to attend the group in future sessions to provide their own feedback to ensure all parties are on track to deliver against the regulators legal requirements.
If you would like further information about the progress of the group or need to address the building safety act requirements in your own organization, please contact: