Alternate Solution

Alternate Solution Process

Most alternate solutions in the past have involved fire engineering, however they don’t have to. Alternate solutions can be done on any part of the BCA that has performance provisions, and the process does not have to be so complicated.

If you’d like to back track on what an alternate solution is, check out our previous article, Performance vs Satisfaction here.

There is a brief explanation of the process in the introduction of the BCA under DOCUMENTATION OF DECISION. We have expanded on this to provide you with a simple, step-by-step process, that is easy to understand and will assist you in developing and documenting alternate solutions for assessment.

Step 1

Identify the stakeholders. Who is going to be affected by this alternate solution?

  • Owner
  • Owners Insurer
  • Designer
  • Specialist designers
  • Builder
  • Building Certifier
  • Fire Services Departments

Step 2

Summarise the proposed alternate solution to give a clear understanding of the reasons for the alternate solution. You should also make a simple list to identify the fundamental differences between the Alternate Solution, and what is provided in a Deem-to-satisfy Solution.

This summary should provide all the stakeholders with a clear understanding, irrespective of their professional discipline, of the overall proposal so that they can confidently, and promptly, agree to the proposition.

Step 3

For Class 1 and 10 buildings

Using 1.0.5 of the BCA Volume 2, identify how the alternate solution is proposed to meet the performance requirements.

For Class 2- 9 buildings

Using A0.5 of the BCA Volume 1, identify how the alternate solution is proposed to meet the performance requirements.

Step 4

For Class 1 and 10 buildings

Using 1.0.9 of the BCA Volume 2, identify the assessment method(s) to be used to assess compliance of the alternate solution.

For Class 2- 9 buildings

Using A0.9 of the BCA Volume 1, identify the assessment method(s) to be used to assess compliance of the alternate solution.

Step 5

For Class 1 and 10 buildings

Using 1.0.10 of the BCA Volume 2, identify the proposed performance requirements that are determined as relevant to the alternate solution.

For Class 2- 9 buildings

Using A0.10 of the BCA Volume 1, identify the proposed performance requirements that are determined as relevant to the alternate solution.

Step 6

The report should demonstrate, using the assessment methods of Step 4, how the performance provision of Step 5 are achieved. This will, in-turn, provide the required compliance under Step 3.

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I am a Director of Development Certification Pty Ltd and have been a Building Surveyor since 1989. I have a bachelor degree in building surveying and I am a qualified carpenter. I have been in the construction industry since 1981. I have a real passion for the building certification profession as I believe building certifiers are the general practitioners of the construction industry. Our role is not only to know building law and apply it, our role includes assisting in the development of the knowledge of all in the industry by sharing our knowledge and experience.