With the purpose of modernising and simplifying the general rules regarding licensing, execution, maintenance and use of works, buildings and equipment based in real estate, among other procedures, the Mayor of Sao Paulo, João Doria, sanctioned last week the New Construction Works and Building Code (“New Building Code”) of Sao Paulo, subject to Law No. 16.642/2017, fully repealing the former Building Code (Law No. 11.228/92).

Before its approval, the New Building Code of Sao Paulo  had indeed come a long way. Resulting from the Project of Law No. 466/2015, authored by the Executive, it has counted on the participation of several public bodies as well as representative and popular entities that prompted the debate on the text set forth in such a project and presented their own suggestions.

The New Building Code facilitates  the speeding up of administrative procedures, without losing sight of the fundamental role of municipal administration in the control and supervision of buildings. It establishes protective measures for the environment and encourages sustainable construction, adapting the artificial environment to the technologies available to the construction industry. In this sense, according to the New Building Code, a new building with a built area of ​​more than 1500 square meters, and meeting specific criteria, must be prepared to receive a water heating system by means of solar energy.

Accessibility to  the buildings is also a concern of the New Building Code. Although the new legal text has repealed the laws related to this matter, the accessibility of buildings for public, collective and private use by persons with disabilities continues to be guaranteed by the New Building Code. There is also a simplification in the licensing of projects, aimed at reducing bureaucracy in the approval of projects, reducing the number of documents required, as well as eliminating the mandatory licensing for execution of works and services with low urban impact. Moreover, the New Building Code increases the rigorousness of building inspection and the responsibility of technical professionals for the projects that are presented.

The legal text was sanctioned on May 09, 2017 and published in the Official Gazette on Wednesday, May 10, 2017. The New Building Code will come into force within 60 days from the date of its publication, along with its regulations, which must be provided by the Executive Branch.

Observations in this update about Brazilian law are by Tauil & Chequer Advogados. They are not intended to provide legal advice to any entity; any entity considering the possibility of a transaction must seek advice tailored to its particular circumstances.