Comic take on building proposals

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WITH TODAY the deadline for public submissions on proposals to improve the quality and safety of buildings, this is how one architect chose to vent his frustration.

This week, Andrew Judge, a Sligo-based architect, posted this innovative comic strip online depicting what he sees as the unfairness of the proposals.

In an apparent knee-jerk reaction to the Priory Hall debacle, the Draft Building Control Regulations propose that in future one “agent” (an architect, engineer or chartered surveyor) will take full responsibility for ensuring a new building complies with all regulations.

Judge and his colleagues are concerned that this will mean too much of the onus of responsibility will fall on the architect, engineer or surveyor.

The proposed wording means one person will have to “accept responsibility and legal liability for the inspection of all works as necessary to ensure that they are neither defective nor contravene any requirements” under building regulations.

“A lot of architects are very worried about it and feel it will be unworkable if it goes through,” said Judge.

“The illustration is an emotional response, and I thought long and hard about putting my own name and face on it, but there has been an overwhelming response, and I have got lots of texts and messages of support from colleagues.”

Let’s hope he has got Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan’s attention too.

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