Building Regulations

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If you’re looking to add a mezzanine floor to your work building, you may be wondering if you’ll need to get planning permission or building regulation approval beforehand. After all, the application process for both can take several weeks, so it’s important to know what you’ll need to apply for ahead of time.

Planning permission is designed to stop unsuitable or dangerous developments from going ahead. Whether a project will be granted planning permission or not depends on how well it abides by two things: the National Planning Policy Framework, and the planning policies in your local area. You can apply for permission through your local planning authority.

Building regulations are another thing to consider. These are the minimum standards that must be met when designing, constructing, or altering nearly any building. To get building regulations’ approval, you’ll need to submit an application to a building control body (BCB) – this is either your local council or a private inspector.

First Floors are the UK’s leading specialists in mezzanine floors, suspended ceilings, and office storage. In this guide, we explain the legal requirements for having a mezzanine floor installed in your workplace.

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Do You Need Planning Permission for a Mezzanine Floor?

Good news – in most cases, you won’t need to apply for planning permission when installing a mezzanine floor. There are some exceptions, however.

As mezzanine floors are constructed within the existing structure of a building, they usually have little impact on the overall structure. This means that planning permission is not normally required when installing one.

On the other hand, a mezzanine floor that makes up a structural element of the building may require you to get planning permission first. Getting permission may require you to make external alterations to the building, such as adding windows on the mezzanine level for ventilation and as a means of escape in an emergency.

There are a number of other instances where the installation of a mezzanine floor may require planning permission:

  • Retail mezzanines that measure over 200m² in area require planning permission, as they may constitute a public health hazard.
  • Some office mezzanines may also need planning permission for the same reason, depending on how many people will be working on the mezzanine level.
  • Some UK counties – in particular, Berkshire and Hampshire – require special consideration to be taken when planning a mezzanine floor, especially relating to fire safety.

If you’re unsure whether you’ll need to get planning permission for your new mezzanine, we recommend checking in with your local planning authority. They’ll be able to advise you on the policies that govern your specific area and situation.

Do You Need Building Regulation Approval for a Mezzanine Floor?

As laid out in the Building Regulations 2010, all mezzanine floors require building regulation approval.

When evaluating the plans for your new mezzanine floor, a BCB will take several things into consideration:

  • Structural safety: Approved Document A
  • Stairs, ramps and guards: Approved Document K
  • Fire safety: Approved Document B
  • Access to and use of the building: Approved Document M

Building Regulation approval usually takes around five weeks. To make the process as simple as possible, the team at First Floors can take care of obtaining Building Regulations Approval on your behalf.

  • All of our mezzanine floors are compliant with structural steel code BS 5950: Parts 1 and 5 – Structural use of Steel Buildings.
  • All loading design is based on BS 6399 Part 1: Code of practice for dead and imposed loads.
  • Staircases and handrails for mezzanine floors are all designed to conform to BS 5395 : Parts 1 and 3.
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Speak to our Mezzanine Floor Experts

At First Floors, we specialise in all aspects of mezzanine floor designmanufacture, and installation.

When building your new mezzanine, we’ll make sure it fully complies with current Building Regulations, British Standards, and best practice guidelines. We’ll also make sure all the necessary fire, health and safety, and access regulations are taken into account in its design. Finally, we’ll submit the plans to your Local Authority or Approved Building Inspector on your behalf for approval!

Our start-to-end service means that you can have a new mezzanine built and installed without having to deal with the legal hassle (or the mountains of paperwork that come with it). You’ll be able to start enjoying the benefits of a more functional, spacious workplace in no time!

Get a quote online or call us on 01789 764172 to get started.