Application for Interior Fit-out Approval


January 2013 at our Architectural Practice

Aménagement des bureaux
Aménagement des bureaux

The application for an Interior Fit-out is a document describing all the planned refurbishments due to undertaken as part of an architectural project in a building that is open to the public (ERP – établissement recevant du public) or in a tall building (IGH – immeuble de grande hauteur). Examples of public access buildings include shops, shopping centres or business and shopping precincts, restaurants, bars, theatres and auditoriums, doctors’ surgeries… The classification of tall buildings, that is buildings over 28m tall or 50m if it is a residential building, includes many building types: for example, residential, hotels, schools and educational establishments, storage warehouses, health centres and office buildings…The application for the interior fit-out concerns all of these building types and, of course, those that are classified as both – a tall building that allows access to the public too. The key objective of this document is to show that the designed refurbishment respects all the necessary regulations.

Interior Fit-out Application Content:

Previously the content of this document was left to the judgment of the architect, who was required to provide all relevant information relating to the fit-out. This meant that the form and layout of the document was quite vague. Since 1st January 2012, it is now compulsory to use a specific CERFA form, called the ‘Application Form demanding the Authorisation to build, to refurbish or to modify a Public Access Building or a Tall Building. (CERFA is the Centre for the Registration and the Revision of Administration forms). This updated format is clearly laid out and so the required information presented in the Interior Fit-out Application is more detailed, leading to a more precise and rigorous approach.

Safety and Disabled Access:

The application form for an Interiors Fit-out approval must include all information related to the safety and the disabled access of the building. Reference must be made to particular building regulations, especially the safety requirements to protect against fire and panic in case of a fire. The application form must show that, for example, the different means of extraction (the number, width and distribution) conform fully to the safety regulations. It must also show that the fire exits, the fire extinguishers and the alarm or alert systems are both accessible and adapted correctly to the building. Finally the document must outline precisely the disabled access and the procedures to evacuate disabled occupants of the building.

Information required for the Fit-out Application:

The Interiors Fit-out Application form is made up of: –       a precise and descriptive account of the materials to be used for the building works and interior refurbishment.

–       plans indicating the widths of all passage ways that concern the flow of people throughout the building, such as the fire escapes, the stairs, the exits…
–       a description of how the project takes into account the disabled access to the building: giving the size of the premises, key characteristics of the technical equipment, the features of the project (the nature and colours of the materials, the treatment of the floor, wall and ceiling surfaces, how to deal with the acoustics in the spaces, main lighting features in the common parts…)

Plans provided focus on:

The plans must indicate the general components that produce and distribute high and low voltage electricity, the gas meters, the routing of the general mains supply and the position of the heating systems…The precise locations of extraction systems for evacuating any products of combustion, the systems for the intake of fresh air and for the evacuation of vitiated gases must also be clearly marked on the plans…as well as the storage location of any combustible materials and the route of this combustible material in from the public roads. The plans must also indicate the specific means of fire protection and prevention, (flame protective partitions, firewalls, fire doors, security and fire safety notices…).

The concerned parties in an Interior Fit-out application:

The owner of a building that is open to the public must submit the interior fit-out application to the relevant authorities, whether that is the city/town planning offices or the local police headquarters, who in turn give approval to the elements provided. For approval they take into account the necessary points regarding fire safety and security as well as the means of evacuation, based on the expertise of the fire service. By 2015, the new building regulations require that all buildings with access to the public, whatever their function and category, must have disabled access. Reid Brewin Architectes have a wide range of experience working on public access building projects and also tall buildings, which must comply with the up-to-date building standards, especially with regards to the Interior Fit-out Application. Do not hesitate to contact us in order to discuss with us further your specific requirements.

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