8.2 Architecture and Interior Design

Oakland Federal Building
Oakland Federal Building

IMPORTANT NOTE: The following criteria do NOT apply to all projects. Follow each criterion only if instructed to by your project-specific risk assessment. Many criteria are based on the recommendations of a specific building risk assessment/threat analysis. Where the criteria include a blank or offer a choice of approaches, the recommendations from risk assessment will provide information for filling in the blank or suggesting a choice of approaches.

Office Locations. Offices of vulnerable officials should be placed or glazed so that the occupant cannot be seen from an uncontrolled public area such as a street. Whenever possible, these offices should face courtyards, internal sites, or controlled areas. If this is not possible, suitable obscuring glazing or window treatment shall be provided, including ballistic resistant glass (see section on New Construction, Exterior Windows, Additional Glazing Requirements), blast curtains, or other interior protection systems.

Mixed Occupancies. When possible, high-risk tenants should not be housed with low-risk tenants. If they are housed together, publicly accessible areas should be separated from high-risk tenants.

Public Toilets and Service Areas. Public toilets, service spaces, or access to vertical circulation systems should not be located in any non-secure areas, including the queuing area before screening at the public entrance.

Loading Docks and Shipping and Receiving Areas. Loading docks and receiving and shipping areas should be separated by at least 50 feet in any direction from utility rooms, utility mains, and service entrances including electrical, telephone/data, fire detection/alarm systems, fire suppression water mains, cooling and heating mains, etc. Loading docks should be located so that vehicles will not be driven into or parked under the building. If this is not possible, the service shall be hardened for blast.

Retail in the Lobby. Retail and other mixed uses, which are encouraged by the Public Buildings Cooperative Use Act of 1976, create public buildings that are open and inviting.While important to the public nature of the buildings, the presence of retail and other mixed uses may present a risk to the building and its occupants and should be carefully considered on a project specific basis during the risk assessment process. Retail and mixed uses may be accommodated through such means as separating entryways, controlling access, and hardening shared partitions, as well as through special security operational countermeasures.

Stairwells. Stairwells required for emergency egress should be located as remotely as possible from areas where blast events might occur.Wherever possible, stairs should not discharge into lobbies, parking, or loading areas.

Mailroom. The mailroom should be located away from facility main entrances, areas containing critical services, utilities, distribution systems, and important assets. In addition, the mailroom should be located at the perimeter of the building with an outside wall or window designed for pressure relief. It should have adequate space for explosive disposal containers. An area near the loading dock may be a preferred mailroom location.

Interior Construction
Lobby Doors and Partitions. Doors and walls along the line of security screening should meet requirements of UL752 Level___(project-specific information to be provided).

Critical Building Components. The following critical building components should be located no closer than ___ feet in any direction to any main entrance, vehicle circulation, parking, or maintenance area (project-specific information to be provided). If this is not possible, harden as appropriate:

  • Emergency generator including fuel systems, day tank, fire sprinkler, and water supply;
  • Normal fuel storage;
  • Main switchgear;
  • Telephone distribution and main switchgear;
  • Fire pumps;
  • Building control centers;
  • UPS systems controlling critical functions;
  • Main refrigeration systems if critical to building operation;
  • Elevator machinery and controls;
  • Shafts for stairs, elevators, and utilities;
  • Critical distribution feeders for emergency power.

Exterior Entrances. The entrance design must balance aesthetic, security, risk, and operational considerations. One strategy is to consider co-locating public and employee entrances. Entrances should be designed to avoid significant queuing. If queuing will occur within the building footprint, the area should be enclosed in blast resistant construction. If queuing is expected outside the building, a rain cover should be provided. Historic buildings generally require alternative design schemes that will not alter the exterior or lobby configuration. Consult the Regional Historic Preservation Officer regarding appropriate solutions.

Warren B. Rudman Courthouse, Concord, NH
Warren B. Rudman Courthouse,
Concord, NH

Forced Entry. See section on Exterior Walls for swinging door, horizontal sliding door, and wall criteria. See section on Structural Engineering, New Construction, Exterior Windows for window criteria.

Equipment Space. Public and employee entrances should include space for possible future installation of access control and screening equipment. In historic buildings place security equipment in ancillary spaces where possible.

Entrance Co-location. Combine public and employee entrances.

Garage and Vehicle Service Entrances. All garage or service area entrances for government controlled or employee permitted vehicles that are not otherwise protected by site perimeter barriers shall be protected by devices capable of arresting a vehicle of the designated threat size at the designated speed. This criterion may be lowered if the access circumstances prohibit a vehicle from reaching this speed (see section on Site Planning and Landscape Design, Vehicular Control, Perimeter Protection Zone).

Additional Features
Areas of Potential Concealment. To reduce the potential for concealment of devices before screening points, avoid installing features such as trash receptacles and mail boxes that can be used to hide devices. If mail or express boxes are used, the size of the openings should be restricted to prohibit insertion of packages.

Roof Access. Design locking systems to meet the requirements of the International Building Code and limit roof access to authorized personnel.

Last Reviewed 2016-08-02