NYC Council Amends Building Code for City’s High-Rises

Wed March 23, 2005 - Northeast Edition
Construction Equipment Guide

Safety for citizens who work in the commercial high rises of New York City was a key issue, which led NYC Council to amend existing building code laws. These new codes will mandate the usage of improved markings, exit signage and back-up power to exit signs.

Following the 9/11 World Trade Center attack, the WTC Building Code Task Force made recommendations, which influenced the new building code amendment. Because the WTC had already implemented safety markings to create clear paths for emergency evacuation, more people were able to escape when the attack occurred.

The power black-out of Aug. 14, 2003, which affected most of the Northeast, also was a factor in the NYC Council’s decision.

Hyline Safety, a manufacturer and distributor of Photoluminescent Emergency Exit and Egress Pathway markings, accepted the task of serving the 400-million-sq.-ft. Manhattan office market with glow-in-the-dark safety signs that will meet the newly revised building codes.

“Even in smoke-filled hallways, low location, non-electric signs are much easier to see and more reliable than conventional overhead electric powered signs. These signs can effectively lead people to safety,” said Evan Lipstein, CEO of Hyline Safety.

Although still waiting for the requirements to be announced, Hyline Safety will be offering NYC newly required RS 6-1 Exit signs and an assortment of all the specific required signs and markings. The signs will provide a non-toxic, non-electric and non-radioactive source of protection.

Once the signs are in place, commercial high-rise building occupants will have a safe illuminated path through dark stairwells, hallways and rooms in the event of an emergency or power outage.

For more information, call 212/688-5600 or visit