Building Design Criteria


Ground Snow Load

The ground snow load is 150 P.S.F. A Structural Engineer can provide reductions (alterations) to this requirement.

Wind Load

Based on the ASCE 7-16 code cycle.
Risk Category 1: 110 mph
Risk Category 2: 120 mph
Risk Category 3: 130 mph
Risk Category 4: 130 mph

Seismic Zone

The seismic zone for the City of South Lake Tahoe is D.

Subject to Weathering from Weathering: 



C if project within 300 feet of lake

Exterior Footings - Frost Depth

All exterior footings or piers shall extend at least 18” below finish grade (frost depth protection).



Climate Zone


Ice Barrier Underlayment Required:


Soil Bearing

The soil bearing is 1500 pounds per square foot. A statement by the engineer classifying the soil per CBC Chapter 1603.1.6 is also acceptable up to 2000 pounds per square foot.

Gas Pressure Test

Must hold 15 pounds (minimum) for 15 minutes (minimum)


42" Minimum depth for exterior domestic water supply

Above Grade Clearance to Wood

6" Minimum

Bedroom Requirements

70 square feet minimum area
                 No dimension less than  7 feet across
Arc fault protection w/ tamper resistant plugs
Emergency Egress Window
Light and Ventilation
Smoke Detector

Ceiling Height

7’ minimum for all habitable space
Slope Ceilings - 50% of required floor area shall be 7’

Emergency Egress Window

20" wide x 24" tall minimum openable area (5.7 sq ft)
44" max distance from floor to clear opening of window

Residential Stairs

Maximum 7 3/4" Rise
Minimum 10" Tread
Nosing required on any stairs with solid risers: 3/4" Minimum to 1 1/4" Maximum
3/8" maximum difference between the smallest and largest tread/rise in a flight of stairs
Minimum 6’8" headroom above stair treads