Access and exit facilities not specifically covered in this section shall not be used to satisfy the exit requirements of this code. Fire escapes shall not be permitted on new construction, with the exception of group homes. Fire escapes may be used as exits on buildings existing on December sixth, nineteen hundred sixty-eight when such buildings are altered, subject to the approval of the commissioner, or as provided in subdivision (b) hereof. Elevators or escalators shall be provided in all new buildings exceeding four stories in height except that buildings or building sections classified in occupancy group H-2 exceeding one story in height and buildings or building sections classified in occupancy group G or J-1 exceeding two stories in height shall be provided with elevators.

(b) In group homes all floors used by children shall have alternate exits remotely located from each other and readily accessible to the occupants. Fire escapes shall be permitted as the second means of egress.