A comparison of technical requirements for housing in Europe

HJ Visscher, L Sheridan, FM Meijer

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceedings/Edited volumeConference contributionScientificpeer-review


    There is still a broad variety of systems of technical requirements for buildings in the various European countries, despite the existence of the Construction products Directive of the European Union and the development of Euro Codes. The goals and mayor subjects are quite similar, and most countries call their regulations `performance based¿. A more detailed look at the formulation and content of the sets of requirements, however shows quite fundamental differences. This paper presents the results and conclusions of a comparative study of the building regulations in Belgium, Denmark, England, France, Germany, the Netherland, Norway and Sweden. The aim of the study was to place the Dutch building Decree within the spectrum of the regulations of the other European countries. The systems and formulations of the requirements and the content of some subjects of requirements (for houses) have been compared in detail. In this paper we describe: stairways and ramps, fire safety, noise, daylight, accessibility and dimensions of habitable space and habitable room. Because of the variety in formulation (different interpretations of the performance approach) adequate comparisons of the actual level of requirements were sometimes quite difficult. The abstract formulations of functions and parts of buildings in the Dutch Building Decree are in this respect unique. The conclusion of the study was that the difference in systems of formulation of the building regulations in the European countries forms a mayor barrier for further harmonisation.
    Original languageUndefined/Unknown
    Title of host publicationBuilding for the Future; CIB-World Building Congress 2004
    EditorsH Elmahdy, e.a.
    Place of PublicationOttawa
    PublisherInstitute for Research in Construction
    Number of pages10
    ISBN (Print)0-662-36716-2
    Publication statusPublished - 2004
    EventToronto, Canada - Ottawa
    Duration: 1 May 20047 May 2004

    Publication series

    PublisherInstitute for Research in Construction


    ConferenceToronto, Canada


    • Conf.proc. > 3 pag

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