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Re-development of Manitoba’s valuable older buildings has long been hampered because it has been difficult to satisfy current Building Codes in older construction. In 2002, Cohlmeyer Architects were engaged be the City of Winnipeg to spearhead adoption of a new equivalency protocol that would facilitate acceptance of alternative methods to achieve public safety in the province’s older buildings.

Over a period of three years, we worked with the provincial and city authorities and with fire safety engineers to develop what is arguably the most sophisticated and engineering-based equivalency protocol in North America. This protocol has been adopted by the Province of Manitoba, and as a result of Cohlmeyer Architects’ initiatives and coordination, the new protocol can be used for all building in the province for redevelopment to office or residential use.