• The National Construction Code (NCC) is an initiative of the Council of Australian Governments developed to incorporate all on-site construction requirements into a single code.

    • What is the National Construction Code (NCC)?


      Simply put, it keeps Australians safe by outlining technical provisions for the design and construction of buildings and other structures throughout Australia. The NCC is a comprehensive code that covers all buildings, plumbing and drainage systems throughout Australia. It accounts for differences in climate, and any external geological or geographic conditions that may affect the structure.

      It is used by all manner of professionals who are involved in the construction of buildings and structures. This includes architects, builders, construction managers, trades people, plumbers, surveyors and engineers. The NCC is published, maintained and revised by the Australian Building Codes Board, which is an Australian Government authority. All new buildings and structures built in Australia must meet the requirements laid out in the NCC.


      The Goal of the NCC 


      The NCC states that its goal is 'to enable the achievement of nationally consistent, minimum necessary standards of relevant safety (including structural safety and safety from fire), health, amenity and sustainability objectives efficiently.' It provides uniform technical Standards for the design, construction and performance for buildings and structures it focuses on improving and maintaining safety, health, amenity, accessibility and sustainability.

      This goal has been largely successful since its introduction. The NCC has delivered significant benefits in maintaining nationally consistent requirements, in improving productivity by encouraging efficient and optimised building methods/materials, and has also increased flexibility and the ability to use new and innovative materials. A CIE report estimates an annual national economic benefit of $1.1 billion from the regulations over the past two decades that it has been active.

      • NCC Pathways


        The NCC is a performance-based code, and it allows for two pathways to achieving compliance. It has been designed to ensure that all buildings nation-wide perform to a minimum standard, which is reflected in these two pathways:


        The Performance Solution


        The NCC, while strict in its safety measures, encourages innovation in buildings' design, technology, and solutions. You may reach the solution any way that is necessary, as long as it meets the specific performance requirements of the code. This Performance Solution pathway is so named because its compliance is measured on the end result, ie its performance.


        Deemed-to-Satisfy Solution


        This second approach is more basic in its approach. This pathway judges the set materials, methods, and components to meet the compliance code.

        Buildings and structures may use either one of these pathways, or even a combination of the two to achieve compliance. 


        What is the difference between the NCC and Australian Standards?


        While both the NCC and Standards both have the same goal, they are not equal. The crucial difference is that the NCC is a requirement that is enforced by law across Australia, whereas Standards can be voluntary measures of safety. They are not legally enforceable or do not have legal status, except when they are explicitly referenced in legislation or legal documents. 

        Standards offer detailed and comprehensive best practice guidelines to keep all aspects of a project as safe as possible. Standards often play a large role in achieving NCC compliance however, as the NCC may reference Australian Standards during a Deemed-to-Satisfy solution.

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