Apartment House Regulation

These regulations are to inform owners, managers and occupants of local laws governing apartment house occupancies. These regulations are designed to provide a reasonable degree of safety to the lives and property of the citizens of Irving. It is the responsibility of each owner/manager to be familiar and to inform their tenants of these regulations for proper enforcement.


APARTMENT HOUSE - is any building, or portion thereof, that contains three or more dwelling units and includes condominiums.

DWELLING UNIT - is any building or portion thereof, that contains living facilities including provisions for sleeping, eating, cooking, and sanitation as required by the Building Code for not more than one family.


907.20.1 MAINTENANCE REQUIRED. Whenever or wherever any device, equipment, system, condition, arrangement, level of protection or any other feature is required for compliance with the provisions of this code, such , equipment, system, condition, arrangement, level of protection or other feature shall thereafter be continuously maintained in accordance with applicable NFPA requirements or as directed by the code official.


SECTION 313 FUELED EQUIPMENT. Fueled equipment, including but not limited to motorcycles, mopeds, lawn-care equipment and portable cooking equipment, shall not be stored, operated or repaired within a building.
313.1.1 The fire code official is authorized to require removal of fueled equipment from locations where the presence of such equipment is determined by the fire code official to be hazardous.


SECTION 3404.3.4.2 OCCUPANCY QUANTITY LIMITS. The following limits for quantities of stored flammable or combustible liquids shall not be exceeded:

GROUP R OCCUPANCIES: Quantities in Group R Occupancies shall not exceed amounts necessary for maintenance purposes and operation of equipment and shall not exceed quantities set forth in Table 2703.1.1(1).



It is unlawful for any person to use or allow or permit to be used a fixed or portable grill in an apartment house or within 10 feet of any part of an apartment house or on or under any portion of the structure of an apartment house.

It is unlawful for any person to own or manage any apartment house without installing and maintaining on each balcony and patio of each dwelling unit approved signage readily visible to the occupants prohibiting the use of any barbecue grill, hibachi, or smoker.

It is unlawful for any person to own or manage an apartment house structure that is designed without patios or balconies without installing and maintaining approved signage in each separate common area.

It is unlawful for any person to own or manage an apartment house without providing written proof to the City of Irving multi-family licensing section that approved signage has been installed on each balcony and patio of every dwelling unit.

It is unlawful for any person to own or manage an apartment house without notifying each tenant as part of the lease agreement upon move-in that such signage exists.


SECTION 401.3 EMERGENCY FORCES NOTIFICATION. The owner or occupant shall immediately report fire, the discovery of smoke from an unauthorized or unidentified source, or any situation that would indicate a hazard.

SECTION 401.3.1 MAKING A FALSE REPORT. It shall be unlawful for a person to give, signal, transmit, or cause to be transmitted a false alarm.


SECTION 901.8 REMOVAL OR RAMPERING WITH EQUIPMENT. It shall be unlawful for any person to remove, tamper with or otherwise disturb any fire hydrant, fire detection and alarm system, fire suppression system, or other fire appliance required by this code except for the purpose of extinguishing fire, training purposes, recharging or making necessary repairs, or when approved by the fire code official.


SECTION 305.2 HOT ASHES AND SPONTANEOUS IGNITION SOURCES. Hot ashes, cinders, smoldering coals or greasy or oily materials subject to spontaneous ignition shall not be deposited in a combustible receptacle, within 10 feet of other combustible material including combustible walls and partitions or within 2 feet of openings to buildings.

EXCEPTION: The separation distance to other combustible materials is allowed to be reduced to 2 feet when the dangerous material is deposited in covered metal or noncombustible receptacles that are placed on a noncombustible floor, ground surface or stand.


SECTION 308.4 TORCHES FOR REMOVING PAINT. Persons utilizing a torch or other flame-producing device for removing paint from a structure shall provide a minimum of one portable fire extinguisher complying with Section 906 and with a minimum 4-A rating, two portable fire extinguishers , each with a minimum of 2-A rating, or a water hose connected to the water supply on the premises where such burning is done. The person doing the burning shall remain on the premises 1 hour after the torch or flame-producing device is utilized.


SECTION 603.9 GAS METERS . Aboveground gas meters, regulators and piping subject to damage shall be protected by a a barrier complying with Section 312 or otherwise protected in an approved manner.


SECTION 1028.2 RELIABILITY. Required exit accesses, exits or exit discharges shall be continuously maintained free from obstructions or impediments to full instant use in the case of fire or other emergency when the areas served by such exits are occupied. Security devices affecting means of egress shall be subject to approval of the fire code official.

SECTION 1028.3 OBSTRUCTIONS. a means of egress shall be free from obstructions that would prevent its use, including the accumulation of snow and ice.


Oxidizing materials shall be stored in cool, ventilated, dry locations and separated from organic materials. Bulk oxidizing materials shall not be stored on or against combustible surfaces.

Oxidizing materials shall be stored separately from flammable liquids, flammable solids, combustible materials, hazardous chemicals, corrosive liquids and such other non-compatible materials as may be determined by the chief and shall comply with Section 8003.6 of the Uniform Fire Code.


SECTION 605.5 EXTENSION CORDS. Extension cords and flexible cords shall not be used as a substitute for permanent wiring. Extension cords and flexible cords shall not be affixed to structures, extended through walls, ceilings or floors, or under doors or floor coverings, nor shall such cords be subject to environmental damage or physical impact. Extension cords shall be used only with portable appliances.


SECTION 605.4 MULTI-PLUG ADAPTERS. Multi-plug adapters, such as cube adapters, unfused plug strips or any other device not complying with the ICC Electrical Code shall be prohibited.


SECTION 605.3 WORKING SPACE AND CLEARANCE. A working space of not less than 30 inches in width, 36 inches in depth and 78 inches in height shall be provided in front of electrical service equipment. .


SECTION 505 PREMISES IDENTIFICATION. New and existing buildings shall have approved address numbers, building numbers or approved building identification placed in a position that is plainly legible and visible from the street or road fronting the property. These numbers shall contrast with their background. Address numbers shall be Arabic numerals or alphabet letters. Numbers shall be a minimum of 4 inches high with a minimum stroke width of 0.5 inch..
See also Code of Civil and Criminal Ordinances Chapter 8, Article III, Section 8-14.

SECTION 505.2 STREET OR ROAD SIGNS. Streets and roads shall be identified with approved signs.

ORDINANCE 5051. Each complex of multiple structures or occupancies shall have an official street address number assigned to each building and each unit as follows:

STREET NUMBERS REQUIRED. Each apartment structure shall have posted thereon street address numbers or other identifying numbers designated by the department of building inspection. The range of street address numbers shall be posted at each entrance to the apartment complex. If there is a name sign posted at each entrance, the range of street address numbers shall be posted on this sign. The street address numbers required by this subsection shall be least 6 inches in height with a 1 inch stroke and otherwise comply with the material requirements of Section 8-31 of this chapter.

APARTMENT DWELLING UNIT NUMBERS REQUIRED. Each dwelling unit in an apartment structure shall have posted at the main entrance of each of said units a number distinguishing the unit from all other units in the structure. Said numbers shall be no less than 1½ inches in height and the stroke shall be ¼ inch. In an apartment complex that has more than 1 vehicular access to one or more structures, the department of building inspection may require the posting of more than one set of street numbers or other identifying numbers on each structure in order that they may be seen from each vehicular access point. The street address numbers or other identifying numbers shall be at least 6 inches in height with a 1 inch stroke and otherwise comply with the material requirements of Section 8-31 of this chapter.


SECTION 503 FIRE APPARATUS ACCESS ROADS. Fire apparatus access roads shall be provided and maintained in accordance with Sections 503.1.1 through 503.1.3.

SECTION 502.1 FIRE APPARATUS ACCESS ROADWAY. A road that provides fire apparatus access from a fire station to a facility, building or portion thereof. This is a general term inclusive of all other terms such as fire lane, public street, private street, parking lot lane and access roadway.

 FIRE LANE SITE PLAN. When fire lanes are required in accordance with Section 503, the owner, builder, or developer shall submit a fire lane site plan (8½" X 11") to the City of Irving Building Inspection Department prior to the issuing of a building permit.

The fire lane site plan shall be forwarded to the fire chief for approval.

Approved fire lane site plans shall be kept on file with the fire department.

Construction of the building shall not begin until the fire lane site plan has been submitted to and approved by the fire chief.

SECTION 503.1.1 BUILDINGS AND FACILITIES. Any fire lane that has been established prior to the adoption of this code, or that has been established by a separate ordinance or approval of a fire lane site plan, is a fire lane for all intents and purposes and shall be maintained as required by this code, whether or not it meets the minimum requirements of a fire lane. In addition, the chief may designate a fire lane when the ingress or egress of a new or existing piece of property is not adequate for fire department apparatus.

SECTION 503.4 OBSTRUCTION OF FIRE APPARATUS ACCESS ROADS. Fire apparatus access roads shall not be obstructed in any manner, including the parking of vehicles. The minimum widths and clearances established in Section 503.2.1 and any area marked as a fire lane as described in Section 503.3 shall be maintained at all times.

EXCEPTION: An approved security gate meeting all the requirements of all applicable city codes

It is unlawful for any person to park, stop, or leave standing any non-emergency vehicle within any area specifically designated as a fire apparatus access road. The owner or person in control of the property upon which a fire apparatus acces road exists shall cause any motor vehicle, other than an authorized emergency vehicle, that is parked in the fire lane to be removed in compliance with applicable laws.

SECTION 503.1.1 BUILDINGS AND FACILITIES. Approved fire apparatus access roads shall be provided  for every facility, building or portion of a building hereafter constructed or moved into or within the jurisdiction. The fire apparatus access road shall comply with the requirements of this section and shall extend to within 150 feet of all portions of the facility and all portions of the exterior wall of the first story or the building as measured by an approved route around the exterior of the building or facility. Except for single- or two-family residences, the path of measurement shall be along a minimum of a ten foot wide unobstructed pathway around the external walls of the structure.

EXCEPTION: The fire code official is authorized to increase the dimension of 150 feet where:

1. The building is equipped throughout with an approved automatic fire sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1, 903.3.1.2, or 903.3.1.3.

2. Fire apparatus access roads cannot be installed due to location on property, topography, waterways, non-negotiable grades or other similar conditions, and an approved alternative means of fire protection is provided.

3. There are not more than two Group R - 3, or Group U Occupancies.

For high-piled combustible storage, see Chapter 23.

For required access during construction, alteration or demolition of a building, see Chapter 14.

SECTION 503.2.1 DIMENSIONS. Fire apparatus access roads shall have an unobstructed width of not less than 24 feet, except for approved security gates in accordance with Section503.6, and an unobstructed vertical clearance of not less than 14 feet.

SECTION 503.2.3 SURFACE. Fire apparatus access roads  shall be designed and maintained to support the imposed load of fire apparatus and shall be surfaced so as to provide all-weather driving capabilities.

SECTION 503.2.4 TURNING RADIUS. The required turning radius of a fire apparatus access road shall be determined by the fire code official.

SECTION 503.2.5 DEAD ENDS. Dead-end fire apparatus access roads in excess of 150 feet in length shall be provided with approved area for the turning around of fire apparatus.

SECTION 902.2.6 BRIDGES. When a bridge is required to be used as part of a fire apparatus access road, it shall be constructed and maintained in accordance with AASHTO Standard Specification for Highway Bridges. Bridges and elevated surfaces shall be designed for a live load sufficient to carry the imposed loads of fire apparatus.

SECTION 503.2.7 GRADE. The grade of the fire apparatus access road shall be within the limits established by the fire code official based on the fire department's apparatus.

SECTION 503.3 MARKING. Approved striping or, when allowed by the code official, signs, or both shall be provided for fire apparatus access roads to identify such roads or prohibit the obstruction thereof. Signs and striping shall be maintained in a clean and legible condition at all times and shall be replaced or repaired when necessary to provide adequate visibility.

1. Striping - Fire apparatus access roads shall be marked by painted lines of red traffic paint six inches in width to show the boundaries of the lane. The words "NO PARKING FIRE LANE" OR "FIRE LANE NO PARKING" shall appear in four inch white letters at intervals of 25 feet on the red border markings along both sides of the fire lanes. Where a curb is available, the striping shall be on the vertical face of the curb.

2. Signs - shall read "NO PARKING FIRE LANE" or "FIRE LANE NO PARKING" and shall be twelve inches wide and eighteen inches high. Signs shall be painted on a white background with letters and borders in red, using not less than two inch lettering. Signs shall be permanently affixed to a stationary post and the bottom of the sign shall be six feet, six inches above finished grade. Signs shall be spaced not more than fifty feet apart. Signs may be installed on permanent buildings or walls or as approved by the fire code official.

SECTION 503.6 SECURITY GATES. 1. In this subsection, the following terms have the following respective meanings:

Controlled access gate means a device located on public or private property that controls or restricts access to motor vehicles or persons or both. The term includes but is not limited to metal or wooden swing railings extending across a street or fire lane that can only be opened by a human operator situated on the premises or by remote control or both.

Light duty metal chain means a chain with metal links no larger than one-quarter (1/4) inch in diameter. This term does not include high test proof coil chains or other heat tempered chains of any size.

Owner means a natural person, corporation, partnership, association, or any other similar entity who has care, custody, or control of the premises.

Main gate means a controlled access gate located on public or private property where more than one controlled access gate exists and that has been designated in writing by the owner to the Police Department, Fire Department, and the Multi-Family Licensing Division as the main access to the property.

Approved padlock means a sub-keyed padlock approved by the fire chief and the chief of police that is in an accessible location and constructed and keyed to allow necessary access as required by the fire chief and the chief of police.

The owner or person in control of property upon which a fire lane exists shall maintain the entire required width of the fire lane free and clear of any parked vehicle or other obstruction at all times.

The owner or person in control of the property upon which a fire lane exists shall cause any motor vehicle, other than an authorized emergency vehicle, that is parked in a fire lane to be removed in accordance with Article 6701g-2 of the Texas Revised Civil Statutes and its successors.

It is unlawful for any person to park, stop, or leave standing any non-emergency vehicle, either attended or unattended, any part of which is within any portion of a fire lane.

It is unlawful for any person to place an object of any kind in, on, or across any fire lane in such a manner as to obstruct the free passage of fire apparatus over a fire lane. It is an affirmative defense to this subsection that the obstruction is a controlled access gate installed and maintained on private property in accordance with all applicable city laws.

It is unlawful for any owner or manager of private property to have a controlled access gate located on or restricting access to his or her property unless the gate is in compliance with the following:

A controlled access gate consisting of wooden railings extended across a street or fire lane shall be so constructed and maintained as to break away at its base on minor impact or on application of manual pressure at the end most remote from the mounting base. The size of the wooden railings shall be a maximum of 5 inches by ¾ inch where attached to the mounting base. The wooden railings shall be of soft wood and mounted on the base by a knife-edged bracket or otherwise scored to create a weak point constructed so as to break away when pressure is applied.

Controlled access gates shall be constructed, mounted, and maintained so that they will open electromechanically using an approved Irving Fire Department transmitter and compatible radio receiver.

The radio receiver shall meet the following criteria:

It is a 2-channel modular receiver with an external antenna that has a frequency approved by the fire chief. Each digital channel module shall be preset to a specific digital code approved by the Chief;

It is equipped with one external, weathertight antenna assembly;

It is located so that it will receive a clear signal from the transmitter when operated from inside the emergency vehicle at a distance of at least 100 feet from the receiver;

It shall override all other opening systems; and

It shall be protected from weather and physical damage.

When activated by the radio signal, the gate shall operate at a minimum speed of one (1) foot per second and remain open until the property agent has been instructed by an Irving police or fire department officer that the gate may resume normal functioning.

The gate shall open utilizing a sub-keyed padlock that conforms to the Irving Fire and Police Departments’ Security Key. Each gate shall have a pin installed on the end of the operating arm closest to the gate that has the capability of being secured by an approved sub-keyed padlock that is accessible from either side of the gate. It is an affirmative defense to this subsection that the gate opens utilizing an alternative system that has been approved in writing by the fire chief for this particular location.

Controlled access gates that are installed across public streets, private drives or fire lanes that have been designated for one (1) way flow of traffic. It is affirmative defense to this subsection that the fire chief has approved an alternative arrangement in writing for this particular location.

Each personnel gate required for emergency access shall be equipped with an access door no smaller than 18 inches by 18 inches that is secured by an approved padlock. The inside latching mechanism of the personnel gate shall not be more than 12 inches from the edge of the access door opening.

Each controlled access gate shall be constructed and maintained so that when power is lost to the gate it can be opened manually.

Each controlled access gate shall be provided with one external wall mount lamp assembly with a red globe and a guard mounted away from the receiver enclosure with a flasher wired in series to 115 volts through one set of N.O. ratchet relay contacts to power the bulb so that it flashes when the gate has been opened by an emergency equipment operator.

The fire chief or chief of police may require an access door installed in either the vehicle or the personnel gate in the area of the padlock in an approved location that provides an opening not less than 18 inches by 18 inches. The padlock shall be accessible from either side of the gate.

It is unlawful for any person to install a rolling access gate that does not meet all applicable requirements of this section. It is unlawful for any person to install or maintain a horizontal rolling controlled access gate on residential property.

It is unlawful for any person to maintain a gate, other than the main gate, which does not have an approved padlock (and an access door if required) that is locked with anything other than a light duty metal chain.

Prior to installation of a controlled access gate, the owner or person in control of the property on which a controlled access gate will be located shall submit plans for the proposed gate to the Irving Fire Department for review. These plans shall include a plot plan of the property, description of the gate and a description of the proposed operation system.

When the plans have been approved by the Fire Department, the applicant shall apply to the Building Inspection Department for a permit to construct the controlled access gate system. Providing the application and corresponding forms are complete and upon payment of applicable permit fee and the assessed $25 transmitter fee, the permit will be issued. After installation, but prior to normal operation, the applicant shall request a final inspection from the Fire and Building Inspection Departments.


The penalty for a violation of this code shall be between $1.00 and $500.00, unless the complaint alleges that the offense was committed intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly, in which case, the penalty shall be from $1.00 to $2,000.00. Each day that a violation continues after due notice has been served shall be deemed a separate offense.