Certified Professional Program
The Certified Professional (CP) Program is an alternative to the conventional Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) process for building permitting and monitoring of construction. As part of this alternative process the CP provides their professional assurance to the AHJ that they will take all appropriate steps to ascertain that the design will substantially comply and the construction of the project will substantially conform in all material respects with the fire and life safety, and accessibility aspects of the building code, other applicable safety enactments, and the related development permit. The Chief Building Official of an AHJ relies upon the CP’s assurances in issuing Building Permits and Occupancy Permits for a project constructed under the CP Program. The CP Manual is intended to be used as a guide in executing the CP Program in the Province of British Columbia where local governments have adopted the CP Program.
The CP Program is administered jointly by Engineers and Geoscientists BC and the Architectural Institute of British Columbia (AIBC). An architect registered with AIBC or a professional engineer registered with Engineers and Geoscientists BC can qualify as a Certified Professional (CP). The CP Program course covers advanced code knowledge and the detailed application of Division A, Division B Parts 1 and 3, and Division C of the BC Building Code and the Vancouver Building By-law. It also covers the requirements and demonstrations on sample projects on how Certified Professionals practice in the cities of Vancouver, Surrey, and other participating municipalities. The AIBC and Engineers and Geoscientists BC run the CP Course and maintain a list of those who have successfully completed the CP Course and upgrade requirements.
There are many reasons why an owner chooses to use this Alternate Permit Process. Usually the owner uses the CP permit process to expedite the building permit issuance. In some jurisdictions, the CP permit process may allow for staged permitting and staged construction, which can be attractive to fast-track projects. Staged permitting and staged construction is generally not available, except on a Certified Professional project.
The owner has an expectation that the CP is looking after the owner’s best interests. Since the CP is also acting on behalf of the AHJ in undertaking plan reviews and site reviews, the CP also has an obligation to the AHJ in respect to “Code Coordination” (refer to Section 4.2 of the CP Manual). Although there may be a perceived conflict of interest in these two roles of the CP, in actual fact there is no conflict. The CP is a registered professional architect or engineer and is bound by the bylaws and code of ethics of their professional association which mandates protection of the public as the primary responsibility of their members.
The use of the CP process is not mandatory for permit issuance. Practising as a CP is an earned privilege. In order for the CP Program to operate successfully, the CP must demonstrate competence in code knowledge and must be familiar with procedures as outlined in the CP Manual. The AHJ places a high level of expectation on the CP, as a result, CP projects are given significantly less oversight than conventional projects by local government staff.
Engineers and Geoscientists BC and the Architectural Institute of British Columbia (AIBC) are once again offering the popular Certified Professional (CP) Course in early 2020; the only course in the province where professional engineers and architects can become Certified Professionals. The CP Course focuses on Part 3 and the relevant associated provisions of the BC Building Code and the Vancouver Building By-law, and on CP practice.
The 2020 CP Course schedule consists of 12 full-day sessions on Wednesdays, from January 8 to April 8, 2020. There are no classes on February 12 and March 25, 2020. There is 1 half-day tutorial on April 15, 2020. The CP Course concludes with 2 full-day exams on April 22 and April 29, 2020.
There are 45 spots available; 35 will be held at AIBC's office in Vancouver, and 10 will be available for attendance via webcast. The CP Course cost is $4,900 until October 15, 2019, and $5,300 after October 15, 2019.
Potential participants are encouraged to explore the possibility of partial grant funding for the course, through the BC Employer Training Grant. To learn more, visit www.workbc.ca and search for Workforce Training Stream.
Although anyone may take the course, only architects and engineers may practice as CPs. Intern Architects AIBC and engineers-in-training who meet all course requirements and pass the exams will be able to practice as CPs when they become BC-registered architects or professional engineers.
To register for the 2020 CP course, visit AIBC’s website (select "2020" in the year drop down menu). Registration for the course closes on December 3, 2019.
Architectural Institute of British Columbia/Engineers and Geoscientists BC Certified Professional Program Manager
Teresa Coady ArchitectAIBC FRAIC AAIA LEED Fellow | CP Program Manager
Toll-Free: 1.888.430.8035 ext. 8185
Email: [email protected]
|The Architectural Institute of British Columbia
100 – 440 Cambie Street, Vancouver, BC, V6B 2N5
|Engineers and Geoscientists British Columbia
200 - 4010 Regent Street, Burnaby, BC, V5C 6N2
List of Certified Professionals as of May 22, 2019