Canadian Consulting Engineer

Masterformat standard embraces civil engineering

Building designers are facing dramatic changes to the document many of them use to organize their specifications. M...

March 19, 2003   Canadian Consulting Engineer

Building designers are facing dramatic changes to the document many of them use to organize their specifications. Moreover civil engineers may soon be using the same resource.
The Construction Specifications Institute and Construction Specifications Canada have released Draft Three of a revised MasterFormat document, and they are asking for input from engineers and other interested users. MasterFormat is the predominant standard in North America for organizing the written specifications for constructing nonresidential buildings.
The revisions constitute the most comprehensive rewrite of MasterFormat in the product’s history. The CSI has reorganized the 16 divisions into nine “groupings,” and expanded coverage to include heavy civil engineering projects (roads, bridges, etc.) and industrial construction.
Each of the nine groupings can hold up to 10 divisions. The new numbering system is also being made consistent with the OmniClass standard being developed for construction information management.
“The current 16 divisions have served the construction industry well for the last 40 years, but we simply don’t have any more room to fit new information and technologies into the current format,” said Dennis Hall, chair of the committee in charge of the revisions. “Draft Three represents a MasterFormat document for the next 40 years, one that will allow the industry to maximize efficiency, minimize confusion and duplication, and hold down the costs of construction well into the future.”
Draft Three’s nine “Groupings,” are as follows:
 Procurement and Contract Requirements Introductory Information (01), Procurement Requirements (02), Contract Requirements (03)
 Common Requirements General Requirements (11), Existing Conditions (12), Performance Requirements (13)
 Site Construction Earthwork (21), Substructure (22), Pavements (23), Landscaping (24), Exterior Specialties (25)
 Common Construction Concrete (31), Masonry (32), Metalwork (33), Structural Wood (34), Structural Plastics (35), Structural Composites (36), Coatings (37), Facility Protection (38)
 Facility Construction Exterior Enclosure (41), Openings (42), Finishes (43), Facility Specialties (44), Furnishings (45), Special and Constructed Elements (46)
 Equipment Facility Equipment (51), Facility Conveying Equipment (52), Facility Material Equipment (53)
 Facility Services Construction Mechanical (61), Fire Suppression (63), Electrical (65), Communications (67), Electronic Safety and Security (68), Integrated Automation (69)
 Infrastructure Construction Utility Construction (71), Rail Transportation Construction (72), Airport Construction (73), Road and Highway Construction (74), Waterway and Marine Construction (75)
 Process Construction Process (80), Material Processing and Handling Equipment (81), Heating, Cooling and Drying Equipment (82), Gas and Liquid Handling, Purification and Storage Equipment (83), Pollution Control Equipment (84), Industry-Specific Manufacturing Equipment (85), Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution Equipment (86)
As with previous drafts, the third version of a new MasterFormat is based on input and feedback from industry stakeholders who will use the new system. All told, MFETT sought input from more than 500 AEC industry organizations.
Visit CSI plans to publish a fourth draft for final commentary this spring, and the final version in Summer 2004.

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