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Technical Assistance Centre (TAC)

The Technical Assistance Centre (TAC) provides information and technical assistance in relation to:
  • 2006 Alberta Building Code (ABC)
  • 2012 Canadian Electrical Code Part 1 (CEC)
  • 2010 National Plumbing Code of Canada (NPC)
  • 2010 B149.1-10 Natural Gas And Propane Installation Code

The list of commonly asked technical questions below can help you find answers to your technical questions about electrical, plumbing and gas, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC), or other building project concerns.

It depends on the scope of the work involved and if “occupancy” is required for the structure or building. According to the Alberta Building Code occupancy means “the use or intended use of a building for the shelter or support of persons, animals or property”.

  • A Building Permit is required for the construction, alteration, installation, repair, relocation, demolition, or change in occupancy of any building or structure.
  • Other permits may be required for the installation of related building services (i.e. Development Permit, Electrical Permit, Mechanical and HVAC Permit, Plumbing and Gas Permit)
  • An owner shall ensure that all permits required in connection with proposed work are obtained before starting the work.

For more information see Building Permit Application Requirements.

Alberta Building Code, in - (3)
Safety Codes Act Reference
Alberta Permit regulation Reference 204/2007

Yes, if a licensed contractor does the work, a Building Permit and any other Trade Permits (Electrical, Mechanical, Plumbing and/or Gas) are required.

If the homeowner wishes to complete the work themselves, a Residential Improvement Permit is required. A homeowner may apply for Homeowner Electrical and/or Plumbing Permits as long as they are the titled property owner for the location where the work will be performed. When applying for a Residential Improvement Permit or Homeowners Permit, the homeowner must provide ID to prove the address listed is the residence where the work will take place.

A homeowner may not obtain permits for a secondary suite unless they will be living in the suite.

Any gas or sheet metal work must be done by a licensed contractor and requires the contractor to apply for permits. For gas, a Gas Permit is required and for sheet metal, a Mechanical Permit is required.

For more information see basement development and renovations

Each bedroom must have at least one Egress window that can be opened from the inside and provide an escape route in the event of a fire.

More information see Egress Window Guidelines.

Please call 311 if you have safety concerns or require additional clarification.

Alberta Building Code 2006

Stair rise:

  • Maximum is 200 millimetres (eight inches);
  • Minimum is 125 millimetres (five inches)

Stair run:

  • Maximum is 355 millimetres (14 inches);
  • Minimum is 210 millimetres (8¼ inches)
  • Minimum Tread depth, 235mm

Alberta Building Code 2006

Wood framing on concrete which is either supported on ground or fill material has to be pressure-treated with a wood preservative or separated from the concrete by more than 0.05 millimetres of polyethylene film or Type S roll roofing material.

Alberta Building Code 2006

A garage / shed greater than 10m sq can be built right up to the property line but there are restrictions. You would need to obtain a Building Permit. In some cases you may need a Development Permit (i.e. depending on the total square footage of building area on your property).

More information see garage and shed permit requirements.

Alberta Building Code 2006 Div. A,

Depending on the structure that the tub is built on or around a Development Permit and Building Permit may be required.

More information see hot tub permit requirements.

Secondary suites are possible in certain Land Use Districts and you will need a Development Permit. Permits for construction such as a Residential Improvement Permit and trade permits (Plumbing Permit, Gas Permit, HVAC Permit and/or Electrical Permit) are also required.

More information see secondary suite permit application requirements.

Construction drawings must be produced to professional drafting standards and include all the required information.

More information on the required drawing details for secondary suites is available at

More information about secondary suite Alberta Building Code requirements and permit application requirements are available at

Alberta Building Code 2006, Section 9.37. Secondary Suites (applies to suites in the primary dwelling)

Alberta Building Code 2006, Section 9.10. Fire Protection (contains requirements for suites in a detached building)

Talk with a Safety Codes Officer
Our experienced Safety Codes Officers can provide you with information about code requirements to complete your project correctly and safely. Submit an online inquiry, and we’ll strive to contact you within one business day, or contact 311. Our hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday (closed holidays and weekends).

About TAC

TAC is comprised of an experienced Safety Codes Officer from each of the four disciplines (Building, Electrical, HVAC and Plumbing & Gas). The purpose is to allow for timely responses to customer enquiries about code regulations which reduces call transfers, creates greater efficiency, and increases customer satisfaction.
TAC staff members are not expected to respond to clients regarding decisions made by Safety Codes Officers in the field or Plans Examiners within Building Regulations. If questions regarding these types of issues arise clients will be redirected to the appropriate Safety Codes Officer, or Operational Supervisor if needed.