PHYSICAL PLANT 8:36-16.1 Scope

  • The standards in this subchapter shall apply to new construction of assisted living residences or alterations or renovations to existing buildings to create assisted living


  • New buildings and alterations, renovations and additions to existing buildings for assisted living residences shall conform with the New Jersey Uniform Construction Code, N.J.A.C. 5:23-3, Use Group I-2 of the


8:36-16.2       Restrictions


Mixed use occupancy shall not be permitted in buildings classified as High Hazard (H), Factory (F) or Assembly (A-2) Use Groups.


8:36-16.3       Ventilation


  • Means of ventilation shall be provided in accordance with the Uniform Construction Code, J.A.C. 5:23, either by windows or by mechanical ventilation for every habitable room.


  • Means of ventilation shall be provided for every bathroom or water closet (toilet) Ventilation shall be provided either by a window with an openable area or by mechanical ventilation.


8:36-16.4       Exit access passageways and corridors


The width of passageways, aisles and corridors shall have a minimum of 44 inches of clear space.


8:36-16.5       Automatic fire detection system


  • Smoke detectors shall be provided in all residents’ bedrooms, living rooms, and “studio apartment” units, whether or not the facility contains a comprehensive automatic fire suppression system


  • All fire detection systems shall be installed in accordance with the Uniform Construction Code, N.J.A.C. 5:23, N.J.A.C. 5:70 and the National Fire Alarm Code, National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 72, 1999 Edition, incorporated herein by reference, as amended and supplemented. National Fire Protection Association publications are available from: NFPA, One Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA, 02269-9101.


8:36-16.6       Fire suppression systems


All facilities shall be provided with a fire suppression system in accordance with the Uniform Construction Code, N.J.A.C. 5:23.


8:36-16.7       Interior finish requirement


Interior wall, ceiling and floor finishes shall be in compliance with the Uniform Construction Code, N.J.A.C. 5:23.


8:36-16.8       General residential unit requirements


  • Residential units occupied by one person shall have a minimum of 150 square feet of clear and usable floor area. Any calculation of clear and usable floor area shall exclude closets, bathroom, kitchenette, hallways, corridors, vestibules, alcoves and foyers unless the applicant submits a written request to the Department to consider an alcove, foyer or vestibule as clear and usable floor area within the context and purpose of these rules and the Department grants such a request. Such request shall be made in writing during the certificate of need process or, if exempt, as part of the licensing application review


  • In units occupied by more than one resident, there shall be a minimum of 80 additional square feet for an additional occupant. No residential unit in an assisted living residence shall be occupied by more than two


  • Residential units shall be lockable by the occupant(s). Egress from the unit shall be possible at all times and locking hardware shall enable occupant(s) to gain egress from within by means of a simple operation. All residential units shall be accessible by means of a master key or similar system which is available at all times in the facility, and available at all times for use by designated


  • Each residential unit shall have an exterior glazed area equal to at least eight percent of the clear floor


8:36-16.9       Toilets, baths and handwashing sinks


  • A bathroom with a toilet, bathtub and/or shower, and handwashing sink shall be located in each residential


  • Additional toilet facilities shall be provided to meet the needs of residents, staff and visitors to the facility and shall be located in areas other than the residential units.


8:36-16.10     Kitchenettes


(a) Each residential unit shall contain, at a minimum, a small refrigerator, a wall cabinet for food storage, a small bar-type sink, and a counter with work space and electrical outlets suitable for small cooking appliances, for example, a microwave, a two-burner cooktop, or a toaster-oven.


  1. Upon entering the assisted living facility, the resident and the resident’s family or representative shall be asked if they wish to have a cooking appliance. If so, the appliance shall be provided by the facility, in accordance with facility policies. If the resident and resident’s family or representative wish to provide their own cooking appliance, it shall meet the facility’s safety


  1. If the resident and the resident’s family or representative do not want a cooking appliance or if resident assessments indicate that having a cooking appliance in the living unit endangers the resident, no cooking appliance shall be provided or allowed in the living


8:36-16.11     Community space


The facility shall provide a minimum of 30 square feet per resident of community spaces for dining and for active and passive recreation.


8:36-16.12     Laundry equipment


  • Each assisted living facility shall provide at least one non-commercial washer and dryer to be used exclusively for residents’ personal


  • Where laundry equipment is limited to non-commercial type, (ordinary household or residential types), no special fire protective measures shall be required.


  • When commercial type laundry equipment is utilized, it shall be installed in a separate laundry room. The remainder of the home shall be protected from the laundry room by fire separation assemblies of at least one- hour rated construction. Openings in all fire separation assemblies shall be protected in accordance with the Uniform Construction Code, N.J.A.C. 5:23.


  • All dryers shall be vented to the outside of the building and properly maintained including the removal of


8:36-16.13     Dietary department


  • Construction, equipment, and installation of food service facilities shall meet the requirements of the dietary programs as contained in this


  • The facilities shall provide, at a minimum, the following:


  1. A control station for receiving food supplies;


  1. Minimum storage facilities for four days’ food supply, including refrigeration and freezer for cold storage items;


  1. Food preparation facilities;


  1. Handwashing facilities located in the food preparation area;


  1. Facilities for food distribution to residents;


  1. Warewashing space;


  1. Potwashing facilities and facilities for cart washing;


  1. Storage areas for cans and carts;


  1. Waste storage facilities;


  1. Offices or desk space for dietitian(s) and the dietary service manager;


  1. A janitor’s closet; and


  1. Self-dispensing icemaking


8:36-16.14     Administration and public areas


  • A grade level barrier-free entrance, sheltered from the weather and able to accommodate wheelchairs shall be provided, and shall include a reception and information counter or desk and waiting space with


  • Space for private interviews shall be


  • An individual mailbox for each resident shall be


  • General or individual offices for records, administrative and professional staffs shall be
  • Space shall be provided for storing employee’s personal



  • Separate space shall be provided for storage of office supplies, sterile or pharmaceutical supplies, and housekeeping


  • A room(s) for examination and treatment of residents, which is adequate for an overnight stay and includes toilet facilities, may be provided. The room shall have a minimum floor area of 100 square feet, excluding space for vestibule, toilet and closet. The room shall contain a lavatory or sink equipped for handwashing, a work counter, storage facilities, and a desk, counter or shelf for writing.


  • An infirmary may be provided for residents who may need 24-hour observation on a temporary basis. Clear space of at least three feet shall be provided at each side and at the foot of each bed in the infirmary. Toilet facilities shall be provided in the


8:36-16.15     Fire extinguisher specifications


  • Fire extinguishers shall comply with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 10, Standards For Portable Fire Extinguishers, 2002 edition, incorporated herein by reference, as amended and supplemented. National Fire Protection Association publications are available from: NFPA, One Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA, 02269-9101.


  • All fire extinguishers shall bear the seal of the Underwriters Laboratories.


  • Nothing in these rules shall supersede or imply non-compliance with

N.J.A.C. 5:70, the Uniform Fire Code.


8:36-16.16     Sounding devices


If self-locking doors are used at the main entrance and other entrances which open onto a roof or balconies, they shall be equipped with a sounding device, such as a bell, buzzer or chime, which is in operating condition. The sounding device shall be affixed to the outside of the door or to the adjacent exterior wall for use in the event that a person is unable to enter the building, and shall ring at an area staffed 24 hours a day.


8:36-16.17     Telecommunications


Each residential unit shall be pre-wired for telephone and television reception.