If a space that was being utilized to teach college classes (initially) vacates and becomes a student group lounge, doesn't the O/L factor used for calculation change? Even though the square footage has not changed?
Yes a change of use
Classroom to assembly/ depending on square footage
It appears by the category of the post your are working with the NFPA 101, Life Safety Code. 2018 edition of NFPA 101 was used for the requirements.
1. The first step is to classify the occupancies as a result of the change of use.
Generally, college and university instructional buildings are multiple occupancies.
2. The next step is to consult with Chapter 43, Building Rehabilitation for the change of use or occupancy within an existing building.
Change of use is meant to address any change in the purpose or level of activity that, although it does not create a change of occupancy, does result in one or more differences in Code provisions applicable to the uses before and after the change. Therefore in my opinion, changing from a classroom with 50 persons and over to a lounge with 50 persons and over in your existing building may not have changed the occupancy classification [assembly]. NFPA 101, Section 43.7.1 will apply.
However when the classroom was under 50 persons has changed to a lounge for 50 or more persons, NFPA 101, Section 43.7.2 will apply.
3. The next step is to apply the occupancy chapter codes determined in above steps 1 and 2 to the existing building.
Thanks very much for your detailed response. I should have included the fact that this space (446 sq ft listed) was used for a teaching class at some point in the past and then re-purposed for a student group with couches, coffee tables, some desks, etc. There was some question as to which coefficient I / we should use to calculate the occupant load.
Thanks for you reply and dialogue with me. Sometimes I make comments and the conversation then goes silent.
Because occupant load is calculated based on use of the space (not occupancy classification). The factor I would use if I were reviewing the project would be "Less concentrated use", where the design shows furnishing layouts. Where no furnishing layouts were shown or folding tables and chairs were proposed, the factor I would use would be "Concentrated use, without fixed seating". The same assessment would be made when I was inspecting the building.
The assembly use of the space does not change from a classroom to a student lounge. The occupancy classification of the space nevertheless is dependent on the occupant load of the space. Where the 446 net square feet space has less concentrated use [446/15=30 occupant load), it would be classified as a business occupancy in college and university instructional buildings. Compared to same net space that has concentrated use [446/7=64 occupant load], it would be classified as an assembly occupancy in college and university instructional buildings. For the means of egress this can mean the difference between one exit access door with no outward swing or two exit access doors with outward swings from the room. And, the difference between no exit signs or exit signs over each of the two required exit access doors in the room. And, the difference between no emergency lighting or emergency lighting in the room.
Taken from 2018 NFPA 101, Life Safety Code.
Not going to change much
If you use 20 for classroom
and 15 for the lounge area not much change
Thanks for your expert part of the discussion, but it was not clear on your thoughts on "Not going to change much If you use 20 for classroom and 15 for the lounge area not much change"?
Since different generic uses are characterized by different occupant densities, Table 18.104.22.168 has established occupant load factors for each use. What was your good sense and rational on determining these numbers in reference to Section 22.214.171.124 and Table 126.96.36.199 of the 2018 NFPA 101, Life Safety Code ?
20 classroom = 22
15 less concentrated = 29
Retrieving data ...