A discussion has ensued among members of ACNY over the past weeks and months in regards to the proposed changes of Buildings Bulletin 2018-008. Below you'll find the email communication between architectural professionals and DOB executives.
From: Gerry Caliendo <email@example.com> Sent: Monday, February 4, 2019 12:25 PM
Please find the attached petition against the Buildings Bulletin 2018-008. Please sign if you agree and forward to anyone that you know has the same concern.
Dear Commissioner ,
As I have mentioned to you in the past, in my practice, I do not file Directive 14 applications, and I do not perform any controlled inspections. The Buildings Bulletin 2018-008 issued by Mr. Sirakis has a detrimental effect on my ability to provide architectural services in the City of New York because the Buildings Bulletin has removed the “option” of using the Directive 14 process and has “mandated” its use. Furthermore, as clearly publicized and documented, the Directive 14 process is a “limited” review as opposed to a Directive 2 review and therefore is widely used throughout the city and most prolifically for interior office construction which is the predominance of work within Manhattan. I do not choose to use the Directive 14 “limited” review process and I don’t understand why it is being forced onto the filing professional against their will and desire. It is my understanding that the Alteration Type 2 – Non-Directive process required the DOB to inspect the construction site for the work that was being performed and that very often the DOB inspection was being requested after the work was performed and not visible at the time of inspection. The resolution to that problem was that the applicant was instructed by the Department to refile under Directive 14. I recognize this as a problem, but the Buildings Bulletin 2018-008 requires substantially all Alteration Type 2 applications to be filed utilizing the Directive 14 “limited review process and the applicant or an inspection agency to do the inspections and request the signoff. There is no reason why the same cannot be done using the ALT 2 NON- DIRECTIVE process with the discretionary item being added that an inspection agency to do the inspections and request the signoff. Therefore the Department will not do the inspection and there will be no “limited” review of the plans. Furthermore, it is my opinion that the Directive 14 process, in that it is a “limited” review examination is seen by the Department as in kind with a “Professional Certification” and that is why there are sanction provisions in the Code for such submissions of plans and inspections, and that is why is disagree with Mr. Sirakis’s statement below that : “Directive 14 filing is not related to Professional Certification.”
As I understand, based on my experience with the SET and SEP units, a Directive 14 Plan examination and review is a limited review and therefore it is considered equal to professional certification and in fact audited by SEP for inaccuracies in the plans based on site conditions whether part of the scope of work or not, and sanctions maybe pending based on the audit.
Your attention to this urgent matter would be greatly appreciated ,
From: Gus (Constadino) Sirakis (Buildings) [mailto:CSirakis@buildings.nyc.gov] Sent: Friday, January 11, 2019 12:39 PM To: Gerry Caliendo <firstname.lastname@example.org> Cc: Cheryl Leon (Buildings) <CLeon@buildings.nyc.gov>; Saadia Chaudhry (Buildings) <SChaudhry@buildings.nyc.gov>; Robert Holub (Buildings) <RHolub@buildings.nyc.gov> Subject: RE: Service Update- October 2018
With the roll-out of DOB NOW and DOB’s project guidelines, we are updating the filing process. To compare what the Department is requiring currently under buildings bulletin 2018-008 to what was previously permitted to be a Directive 2 review, there really is no substantive change with the exception of final inspection performance.
We currently require an Architect or Engineer – who does not need to be the same architect or engineer who filed the plans – to perform the final inspection for the reasons stated in buildings bulletin 2018-008. The PE/RA filing the plans should see no difference in how the process works for plan exam, and sign-off should be better coordinated to allow for timely inspections.
Directive 14 filing is not related to professional certification. Plan examiners are performing their reviews using project-specific guidelines, and those applicants who do not have privileges to file Directive 14 are being permitted to file through this process, provided they do not take responsibility for performing the Final Inspection.
Constadino (Gus) Sirakis, PE
Assistant Commissioner | Technical Affairs & Code Development
t: (212) 393-2043 e: email@example.com
From: Gerry Caliendo [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] Sent: Monday, January 7, 2019 4:31 PM To: Cheryl Leon (Buildings) <CLeon@buildings.nyc.gov> Cc: CaliendoUsers <CaliendoUsers@caliendoarchitects.com>; Thomas Fariello (Buildings) <TFariello@buildings.nyc.gov>; AIA Queens <email@example.com> (firstname.lastname@example.org) <email@example.com>; Simon Rothkrug <Simon@rrslawllp.com>; Costa Constantinides <firstname.lastname@example.org>; Chris M. Sideris (email@example.com) <firstname.lastname@example.org>; Rick Chandler (Buildings) <RChandler@buildings.nyc.gov>; Jamie Maule (Buildings) <JMaule@buildings.nyc.gov>; barry grodenchik <email@example.com> Subject: RE: Service Update- October 2018
As per our previous conversations on the above mentioned Service Update, Directive 14 has always been an optional filing process, NOT A REQUIRED FILING PROCESS !
The Directive 14 process is considered a “CERTIFIED APPLICATION” which to the Department is the same a “PROFESSIONALLY CERTIFIED” or “ SELF CERTIFICATION OF OBJECTIIONS”.
Applicants cannot be required to file a “CERTIFIED APPLICATION” which comes with is the responsibilities and the liabilities that must not be “required”. By requiring applicants to file ONLY utilizing this process
the Department is limiting our ability to make a living and I believe that this is not correct nor legal.
When we spoke several months ago, you agreed with me and you notified the Borough Director to allow the processing of the NON-DIRECTIVE application with the caveat that the plan examiner will add a discretionary item for a separate “inspection agency” to prepare, file a TR-1 for the inspection and sign-off of the application.
To my knowledge, until today, nothing has changed since our last conversation and the Borough Director accepting and processing the application.
Your urgent attention is required in this matter.
I am anxiously awaiting your response.
Gerald J. Caliendo, Architect
138-72 Queens Boulevard
Briarwood, N.Y. 11435