Eurocodes – is the industry ready?

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By the end of March, the new Eurocodes will be mandatory for European public works and are also set to become the de-facto standard for the private sector – both in Europe and worldwide.

The Eurocodes are a set of harmonised European standards for the design of buildings and civil engineering structures. There are 10 codes made up of 58 parts that will be adopted in all EU member states. Most existing national codes will be withdrawn, giving way to the new codes.

  • The ICE and IStructE have been running the Eurocodes Expert site, a free online resource giving updates, advice and academic guidelines to the industry.
  • BSi also provides information on the codes and which British Standards they are replacing.
  • Courses and workshops are available to help consultants, contractors, clients, building control officers and manufacturers prepare for the new regulations.
  • TRADA has extended their EC5 workshops into March 2010: “The most significant change for timber design is the adoption in EC5 of the limit state design philosophy. This philosophy ensures that the same basis of design is used for all materials. Once designers become familiar with the Eurocodes, this will make it much easier for them to choose and combine materials.”
  • The Concrete Centre has published a concise guide to Eurocode 2, detailing the design of reinforced concrete-framed buildings to EC2. With extensive clause referencing and design aids, the publication aims to help designers with the transition to EC2 and other relevant Eurocodes.
  • The NCE is conducting a survey to establish “the level of industry awareness around this significant change to working practices.” The closing date for responding is Friday 12 February 2010. Click here to give your feedback.
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2 Responses to “Eurocodes – is the industry ready?”

  1. Eurocodes Says:

    Hi,

    Thank you for your article. Just to add some number about Eurocodes.

    Most of Britain’s structural design engineers are ready to convert to Eurocodes by the March 2010 implementation date, according to a recent survey by BSI British Standards. However, with just over half a year to go to withdrawal of existing UK standards, less than a third are currently using the new codes and a sixth do not expect to meet the deadline.

    Cheers

    The online questionnaire survey, which was carried out in July 2009, found that 30% or respondents are currently using Eurocodes, only 1% up on a previous survey in November 2008. However, a further 7% expect to make the switch this autumn, followed by 14% this winter and 34% by next spring – meaning 85% will meet the official full implementation date.

    The remaining 15% expect to be using Eurocodes by autumn 2010 – a significant turnaround from the November 2008 survey when a quarter of respondents said they would not be using the new codes at all.

    The survey also revealed the keenness of UK designers to take advantage of the international opportunities afforded by Eurocodes, with 60% saying that access to other European national annexes is essential or desirable.

  2. esieditor Says:

    Hi there,

    Many thanks for providing these stats – makes for interesting reading. People are obviously coming round to the realities of the new codes.

    At last week’s Ecobuild event, a lot of construction professionals were talking about the complexities of having to deal with overlapping and ever-evolving standards, regulations and targets.

    However, others ventured the opinion that these are complex issues, so we should resist the temptation to over-simplify.

    At least, as you indicate, being able to sing from the same hymn-sheet across Europe has to be a positive thing for the industry.

    Thanks again for your contribution.

    Benedikte, ESI Ltd

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