Redesigning Calgary

Creating a Contemporary Stair Design

As we peruse online design ideas, our heads get full of these beautiful contemporary railing systems that simply make us drool. Unfortunately or fortunately (depending how you look at it!) for us Canadians, most of these railing solutions simply are not to Canadian building codes.

For example:

Black Railing Option
Cable System

In order to meet Canadian building codes you cannot have any horizontal elements that would allow a child or persons to grab a foothold with and essentially ‘climb’ on.

Now, just because the above solutions are not to code here in Canada, doesn’t mean we don’t have some amazing contemporary options.

Recently we just finished a project in Bayview, where we transitioned a very dated, dark, and tired 70’s styled home into an open, airy contemporary oasis. When determining what railing style we would use, we opted for solid glass panels to create a clean uniform and airy contemporary look while still meeting all building code requirements. Check out the before and after!

Kasian Stairs

Another option home-owners seem to overlook is a stub wall, or drywall “railing”. Featured, this month on CTV’s House to Home, was the Carmini model in Artesia. In this home, we opted for the stub wall application on a curved stair. Of course, this application still requires a continuous handrail, but it creates that uniform and clean contemporary flare we are trying to achieve, giving us yet another option when considering our code requirements.

Carmini Stair

If you missed this episode of House to Home, check it out here >> House to Home - Stair Design

Moral of the story is, don’t let building codes temper your creative flare, if you have a feel or look you are trying to achieve there are still many options. And if you are really stuck – call in for some professional advice!


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