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Convenience Opening

Convenience stairs, loosely defined as any non-egress stairs, are increasingly popular in retail establishments. Most establishments prefer open convenience stairs as opposed to fully enclosed shaft stairs. Because open convenience stairs pose increased fire hazards, they are required to abide by a strict series of code. Here is how open convenience stairs may be permissible with the most allowances.

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Communicating Space

In 2000 NFPA, section states that unenclosed floor openings forming a communicating space between floors is permitted if it meets the following requirements:
1) Doesn’t connect more than 3 stories
2) Lowest or next to lowest story is street floor
3) Entire floor area of the communicating space is open and unobstructed such that a fire in any part of the space will be readily obvious
4) If sprinklered,

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