Canadian Consulting Engineer

SPECIFICATIONS: Major changes to MasterFormat ahead

In February the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) approved plans to expand and change the divisional organization of MasterFormat. MasterFormat is the standard framework used by engineers a...

May 1, 2002   Canadian Consulting Engineer

In February the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) approved plans to expand and change the divisional organization of MasterFormat. MasterFormat is the standard framework used by engineers and architects for organizing and formatting the written specifications for commercial building projects.

The proposed revisions will have a major impact on mechanical and electrical consulting engineers.

Under the proposals, which are expected to be implemented by late 2003, Divisions 3-14 will remain largely intact. Sections 15 Mechanical and Section 16 Electrical will be eliminated and their content will be divided and expanded among a proposed group of new divisions. At least two new divisions, covering Communications, and Life Safety and Facility Protection, will be created.

The new format is partly intended to bring the MasterFormat system up to date with developments in building design (the document was last revised in 1995). Many users had been pressing for a new division to cover telecommunication systems, which have become a major part of any building infrastructure with the explosion in Internet and communications technology. In developing the proposed revisions the CSI task force sought input from 500 architectural, engineering and construction industry organizations

The revised format will also broaden the MasterFormat base so that it will be useful for engineers doing heavy civil engineering projects and industrial construction. During their investigations the team heard many requests for CSI to expand the MasterFormat system to cover civil engineering projects such as roads, bridges, utilities and plants.


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