New 2017 NEC Meeting Room Requirements. Here’s what you need to know.
04 17 2018
With the introduction of the 2017 NEC, that is about to change.
What is changing?
In the 2017 NEC, a new article 210.71 titled “Meeting Rooms” was introduced. This article now requires a minimum number of receptacles for meeting rooms less than 1,000-squarefeet. This minimum number of fixed wall receptacles will be calculated similarly to a residential space where one outlet will be required for roughly every 12’-0” of linear wall space. Unlike a residential space, we are not required to space out the receptacles every 12-’0”. They can be located as determined by the designer or tenant to best suit the way the space will be used. This means that if the room is required to have a minimum of 6 receptacles and the tenant knows power will only be required on a single wall, we are able to locate all 6 receptacles in that location.
However, if the meeting room is at least 12’-0” wide and has a floor area of at least 215-square-feet, one receptacle outlet will be required in the floor. This receptacle shall be located at a distance not less than 6’-0” from any wall. One floor receptacle will be required for each 215-square-foot portion of the floor space. The goal of these floor receptacles is to minimize the need for extension cords or power strips plugged into the wall to accommodate people with laptops or projectors and minimize tripping hazards around the perimeter of the meeting room.
Many large meeting rooms have movable partition(s) provided and the code has taken that into account as well. When a room is provided with moveable partitions, each room size shall be determined by the partition in the position that results in the smallest room size. For example, a large training room has total square footage of 1,800-square-feet. It exceeds the 1,000-square-foot threshold and does not have to comply with the new code section. But if there is a moveable partition that divides the space equally, it would be considered (2) 900-square-feet meeting rooms and must meet the new code requirements. What are some floor mounted receptacle solutions?
What are some floor mounted receptacle solutions?
- Floor boxes and poke-thru devices.
- Floor boxes and poke-thru devices are great for this application because they provide flexibility in their ability to be installed where they best service a specific application. Since they are flush to the floor they blend in into the room and come in a variety of finishes. They are able to deliver power, data and AV connections.
- They will require core drilling or trenching into the floor slab which may not always be an option or cost effective.
An example of In-Carpet and Under-Carpet Raceway
- In-Carpet and Under-Carpet Raceways
- Ultra-low profile floor mounted wireway system which can provide the required power receptacles without having to core drill or trench. This solution provides flexibility to relocate power devices in the future and is easier to install.
- However, it will result in a gradual transition in floor height as you approach the wireway. This transition can still be ADA compliant and most furniture is still able to glide over the wireway in a way that users may not even realize the under-carpet raceway is there.
An example of an Under Carpet Flat Cabling System
- Under Carpet Flat Cabling Systems.
- Flat wires are installed directly under the carpet titles with no change in floor height. They are Easy to install and provide the most flexibility of any other installation type.
- This solution is still a fairly new product on the market and some contractors may not be familiar with it. It does limit the number of receptacles that can be served from a single wall connection.
Within Maryland, Howard and Baltimore Counties have adopted the 2017 National Electrical Code and we understand that Prince George’s County and other local jurisdictions and the State of Maryland will be adopting this updated code soon.
Arium has an integrated design studio with experts across a wide range of disciplines that monitor changes and implications of the latest adopted codes and local interpretations. Please feel free to give us a call at (410) 730-2300 if you’d like to discuss this or other new code updates and their implications.