a. Construction phase.
1. DADS Regulatory Services Division, Licensing and Credentialing Section must
be notified in writing of construction start.
2. All construction must comply with minimum licensing requirements. It is the
sponsor’s responsibility to employ qualified personnel to prepare the contract
documents for construction of a new facility or remodeling of an existing facility.
Contract documents for additions and remodeling and for the construction of an
entirely new facility must be prepared by an architect licensed by the Texas Board
of Architectural Examiners. Drawings must bear the seal of the architect. Certain
parts of contract documents including final plans, designs, and specifications
concerning sheets and sections covering structural, electrical, mechanical,
sanitary, and civil engineering must bear the seal of a professional engineer
licensed by the Texas Board of Professional Engineers to operate in Texas or, the
signature of a Responsible Managing Employee or Alarm Planning
Superintendent licensed by the State Fire Marshal’s Office as authorized by
subsection (b)(12) and (15) of this section.
A. Remodeling is the construction, removal, or relocation of walls and
partitions, the construction of foundations, floors, or ceiling-roof
assemblies, or the expanding or altering of safety systems including
sprinkler, fire alarm, and emergency systems.
B. General maintenance and repairs of existing material and equipment,
repainting, applications of new floor, wall, or ceiling finishes, or similar
projects are not included as remodeling, unless as a part of new
construction. DADS must be provided flame spread documentation for
new materials applied as finishes.
b. Contract documents.
1. Site plan documents must include grade contours; streets with names; north
arrow; fire hydrants; fire lanes; utilities, public or private; fences; unusual site
conditions including ditches, low water levels, other buildings on-site; and
indications of buildings five feet or less beyond site property lines.
2. Foundation plan documents must include general foundation design and details.
3. Floor plan documents must include room names, numbers, and usages; numbered
doors including swing; windows; legend or clarification of wall types;
dimensions; fixed equipment; plumbing fixtures; and kitchen basic layout; and
identification of all smoke barrier walls from outside wall to outside wall or fire
4. For both new construction and additions or remodeling to existing buildings, an
overall plan of the entire building must be drawn or reduced to fit on an 8½ inch
by 11 inch sheet; submit two reduced plans for file record. See subsection (d)(3)
of this section.
5. Schedules must include door materials, widths, types; window materials, sizes,
types; room finishes; and special hardware.
6. Elevations and roof plan must include exterior elevations, including material note
indications and any roof top equipment; roof slopes, drains, and gas piping, and
interior elevations where needed for special conditions.
7. Details must include wall sections as needed (especially for special conditions);
cabinet and built-in work; cross sections through buildings as needed; and
miscellaneous details and enlargements as needed.
8. Building structure documents must include structural framing layout and details
primarily for column, beam, joist, and structural frame building, roof framing
layout if the layout cannot be adequately shown on a cross section; cross sections
in quantity and detail to show sufficient structural design and structural details as
necessary to assure adequate structural design, also calculated design loads.
9. Electrical documents must include electrical layout, including lights, convenience
outlets, equipment outlets, switches, and other electrical outlets and devices;
service, circuiting, distribution, and panel diagrams; exit light system with exit
signs and emergency egress lighting; emergency electrical provisions including
generators and panels; and similar systems including control panels, devices, and
alarms; sizes and details sufficient to assure safe and properly operating systems;
and a staff communication system.
10. Plumbing documents must include plumbing layout with pipe sizes and details
sufficient to assure safe and properly operating systems, water systems, sanitary
systems, gas systems, other systems normally considered under the scope of
plumbing, fixtures, and provisions for combustion air supply.
11. Heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) documents must include
sufficient details of HVAC systems and components to assure a safe and properly
operating installation including, but not limited to, heating, ventilating, and airconditioning layout, ducts, protection of duct inlets and outlets, combustion air,
piping, exhausts, and duct smoke and/or fire dampers; and equipment types, sizes,
and locations.
12. Fire sprinkler system plans and hydraulic calculations must be designed in
accordance with and including all the required information on the plan, specified
in NFPA 13, NFPA 13R, or NFPA 13D as applicable and the NFPA documents
referenced therein, published by the National Fire Protection Association and
signed by a Responsible Managing Employee, licensed by the State Fire
Marshal’s Office or bear the seal of a licensed professional engineer.
13. Other layouts, plans, or details as may be necessary for a clear understanding of
the design and scope of the project; including plans covering private water or
sewer systems must be reviewed by the local health or wastewater authority
having jurisdiction. If no local authority, then the plans will be reviewed by
14. Specifications must include installation techniques, quality standards and/or
manufacturers, references to specific codes and standards, design criteria, special
equipment, hardware, painting, and any others as needed to amplify drawings and
15. Detailed fire detection and alarm system working plans must be designed in
accordance with the applicable sections of the National Fire Alarm and Signaling
Code (NFPA 72) and the National Electric Code (NFPA 70) and signed by an
Alarm Planning Superintendent licensed by the State Fire Marshal’s Office or bear
the seal of a licensed professional engineer.
c. Initial survey of completed construction.
1. Upon completion of construction, including grounds and basic equipment and
furnishings, an initial architectural inspection of the facility, including additions
or remodeled areas, is required to be performed by DADS prior to occupancy.
The completed construction must have the written approval from the local
authorities having jurisdiction where the facility is located, including the fire
marshal, health department, and building inspector.
2. The inspection described in paragraph (1) of this subsection may be obtained on
an expedited basis by complying with §92.4(g) of this chapter (relating to License
3. After the completed construction has been surveyed by DADS and found
acceptable, DADS Life Safety Code staff conveys the survey results to DADS
Licensing and Credentialing Section as part of an applicant’s license application.
In the case of additions or remodeling of existing facilities, the applicant may be
required to submit a revision or modification to an existing license. All building,
grades, drives, and parking must essentially be 100 percent complete including
basic furnishings and operational needs at the time of the initial visit for
occupancy approval and licensing. A facility may accept up to three residents
after it receives initial approval from DADS Life Safety Code staff but before the
license is issued.
4. The following documents must be available to DADS surveyor at the time of the
survey of the completed building:
A. written approval of local authorities as called for in paragraph (1) of this
B. record drawings of the fire detection and alarm system as installed, signed
by an Alarm Planning Superintendent licensed by the State Fire Marshal’s
office or sealed by a licensed professional engineer, including a sequence
of operation, the owner’s manuals and the manufacturer’s published
instructions covering all system equipment, a signed copy of the State Fire
Marshal’s Office Fire Alarm Installation Certificate, and, for softwarebased systems, a record copy of the site-specific software excluding the
system executive software or external programmer software in a nonvolatile, non-erasable, non-rewritable memory;
C. documentation of materials used in the building which are required to
have a specific limited fire or flame spread rating including special wall
finishes or floor coverings, flame retardant curtains including cubicle
curtains and rated ceilings. In the case of carpeting, the documentation
must include a signed letter from the installer, verifying that the carpeting
installed is named in the laboratory test document;
D. record drawings of the fire sprinkler system as installed, signed by a
Responsible Managing Employee, licensed by the State Fire Marshal’s
Office or sealed by a licensed professional engineer, including the
hydraulic calculations, alarm configuration, aboveground and underground
Contractor’s Material and Test Certificate, all literature and instructions
provided by the manufacturer describing the proper operation and
maintenance of all equipment and devices in accordance with NFPA 25,
Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based
Fire Protection Systems;
E. service contracts for maintenance and testing of alarm systems and
sprinkler systems;
F. a copy of gas test results of the facility’s gas lines from the meter;
G. a written statement from an architect or engineer stating that, from
periodic onsite observation visits, the facility as constructed is, to the best
of the architect’s or engineer’s knowledge and belief, in substantial
compliance with the architect’s or engineer’s construction documents, the
Life Safety Code, DADS licensure standards, and local codes; and
H. the contract documents specified in subsection (b) of this section.
d. Nonapproval of new construction.
1. If, during the initial on-site survey of completed construction, the surveyor finds
certain basic requirements not met, the surveyor may recommend to DADS
Licensing and Credentialing Unit that the facility should not yet be licensed and
approved for occupancy. The basic items that may trigger non-approval include:
A. construction which does not meet minimum code or licensure standards
for basic requirements including corridors that are less than the required
width, ceilings installed at less than the minimum seven-foot six-inch
height, resident bedroom dimensions less than required, and other features
which would disrupt or otherwise adversely affect the residents and staff if
corrected after occupancy;
B. lack of written approval by local authorities having jurisdiction, including
the fire marshal, health department, and building inspector;
C. fire protection systems not completely installed or not functioning
properly, including, but not limited to, fire alarm systems, emergency
power and lighting, and sprinkler systems;
D. required exits not all usable according to NFPA 101 requirements;
E. telephone not installed or not properly working;
F. sufficient basic furnishings, essential appliances, and equipment are not
installed or not functioning; and 86
G. any other basic operational or safety feature which the surveyor, as the
authority having jurisdiction, believes would preclude safe and normal
occupancy by residents on that day.
2. If the surveyor encounters minor deficiencies, the surveyor may recommend
approval of the facility’s license based on an approved written plan of correction
from the facility’s administrator.
3. A facility must submit two copies of reduced size floor plans on an 8 1/2 inch by
11 inch sheet to DADS for DADS record and for the facility’s use including an
evacuation plan or fire alarm zone identification. The plan must contain basic
legible information including scale, room usage names, actual bedroom numbers,
doors, windows, and any other pertinent information.