Structural failures and the total collapse of mid-rise residential buildings are common phenomena in Nigeria. The rate at which buildings collapse in Nigeria, the frequency of this occurrence, and the magnitude of the losses which are recorded in terms of lives and properties, are becoming alarming. Such incidents are reaching an unprecedented level and have become a major source of concern, not only to the government at all levels but to all stakeholders involved. This paper identifies and examines structural building regulatory implementation and enforcement practices, focusing on stakeholders’ perceptions of building regulatory enforcement and compliance in Nigeria. Quantitative data were captured via a structured questionnaire survey of architects, builders, and engineers, with valid responses received from 378 (63%), and semi-structured face-to-face interviews with industry professionals from different disciplines, such as structural engineers, heads of building departments, site managers, architects, quantity surveyors, builders and project site supervisors, enabled stakeholders’ perceptions of building regulatory enforcement and compliance to be obtained. Using the software SPSS for descriptive and inferential statistical analysis and Nvivo 10 for the qualitative analysis, the quantitative findings revealed that stakeholders’ perceptions of building regulatory enforcement and compliance are that these are very low and unsatisfactory. The qualitative findings yielded a large amount of multiple-interlocking reasons for the lack of compliance, which were anchored in inadequate project supervision, poverty levels, inadequate regulatory awareness, and inadequate professional experience. The findings emphasise the need for the Nigerian house-building sector to adopt international best regulatory implementation practices in order to eliminate mid-rise residential building structural failures through short-term and long-term initiative measures. The sector should focus on systemic and attitudinal change, implementation through capacity building and team work, double-loop feedback learning, and a continual evaluation of the implementation process with a view towards improving residential building construction regulatory practices in Nigeria.
Keywords: Improvement, Nigeria, Residential Building, best practice implementation, structural collapse
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