Q I’m planning on framing a landing to break up a long stairway that runs from grade to an upper-level deck. How should the landing be designed—as a separate deck or as part of the stairway?

A Mike Guertin, a builder and remodeler in East Greenwich, R.I., and the “Deck Workshop” presenter at JLC Live, responds: I treat a landing like a small deck. I design it to handle regular live and dead loads (40 pounds and 10 pounds, respectively) as well as the concentrated loads imposed by the stairs that attach to it. Just like a deck, a...

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