Photo by PoPville flickr user Leah L.
ground-level deck, building code, inspection
“I’m trying to convince myself that I could install a small ground-level deck in my backyard. I.e., a wooden deck that essentially rests on the level ground (on buried concrete anchors) and has it’s deck surface only 8-12 inches above ground level. A call to the DCRA Homeowner Center suggests I buy a survey drawing on which to indicate where the deck would go, and then also provide a drawing detailing how the deck would be built, and they can issue permits. I began tip-toeing into DC building codes just to make sure I addressed things, like how deep to bury concrete pilings below frost line, what size 2x boards to use, etc, but quickly got beaten down. I welcome any wisdom in terms of how to best find all the info I need so I can make sure to check all the boxes and build this thing that seemed fairly straightforward until I called DCRA. E.g., can I avoid putting rails and stairs since it’s so low to the ground? Many thanks.”
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