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Earthquakes and Existing Buildings:

Where Do We Stand?
2009 WSSPC Annual Meeting
February 12, 2009
Earthquakes and Existing Buildings

ƒ Progress being made but there’s a long way to go


ƒ 2006 National Research Council reports states –
• “… the economical retrofit of existing structures is
perhaps the most important issue facing earthquake-
prone communities today. A new generation of
retrofit technologies that cost less than existing, less
effective techniques but preserve cultural and
architectural resources and protect real estate
investments from total loss is long overdue”
ƒ If these are some of the challenges then what are
possible solutions?
Earthquakes and Existing Buildings

ƒ What’s the size of the problem?


ƒ HAZUS AAL Study (FEMA P-366/April
2008)
• $5.3B annual losses
• 2/3 in California
ƒ HAZUS study of Utah’s Wasatch Front
• Estimates daytime event will cause
more than 6,000 deaths w/ most
casualties due to collapsed
commercial and educational buildings
• estimates 80% of severe casualties in
the scenario earthquake caused by
URMs
• HAZUS-MH determined that casualties
from schools would be approximately
1,100.
Existing Buildings –
FEMA’s Challenges

ƒ Reduced federal funding for EQ Mitigation


• No major domestic EQ since 1994
• Many competing priorities at FEMA (PKEMRA means
a refocused FEMA)
• Economic Woes
• Need for creative approaches relevant to current
societal priorities (sustainability/green building/all-
hazards application)
• Need messages that are visible and that will attract
champions
FEMA Existing Buildings Program –
What’s Been Done So Far

ƒ Guidance documents since 1985


FEMA 178 NEHRP Handbook for the Seismic Evaluation
of Existing Buildings, (1992)
FEMA 273, 274 NEHRP Guidelines for the Seismic
Rehabilitation of Buildings, NEHRP
Commentary on the Guidelines for the
Seismic Rehabilitation of Buildings, (1997)
FEMA 154 Rapid Visual Screening of Buildings for Potential
Seismic Hazards: A Handbook, (1988, 2002)
FEMA 310 Handbook for the Seismic Evaluation of
Buildings, (1998)
FEMA 237 Seismic Rehabilitation of Buildings—Phase I:
Issues Identification and Resolution
FEMA Existing Buildings Program –
What’s Been Done So Far

ƒ Guidance documents since 1985


FEMA 172 NEHRP Handbook for Seismic Rehabilitation of
Existing Buildings (1992)

FEMA 156, 157 Typical Costs for Seismic Rehabilitation of Existing


Buildings, Volume I: Summary, July and
Supporting Documentation, (year) Second edition,
1994 (Online calculator tool – 2006)
FEMA 227, 228 A Benefit-Cost Model for the Seismic
Rehabilitation of Buildings: A User’s Manual, and
Supporting Documentation.
FEMA 255. 256 Seismic Rehabilitation of Federal Buildings: A
Benefit/Cost Model, Volume I: A User’s Manual,
(EO 12941) and Supporting Documentation (1994)
FEMA Existing Building Program – What’s
Been Done So Far

Guidelines for SR
(FEMA 273, 274)
Prestandard for SR
(FEMA 356)
Handbook for ASCE 41
Seismic Evaluation
Prestandard for
(FEMA 178)
Evaluation
(FEMA 310)
ASCE 31

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Existing Buildings – Design Guidance,
standards and model building codes

FEMA EB Guidance has been incorporated into


National Consensus Standards and now referenced
in IEBC, IBC, and NFPA 5000
Existing Buildings and NEHRP

ƒ NEHRP Strategic Plan


• Strategic Priority:
“Improve Techniques for
Evaluating and Rehabilitating
Existing Buildings”
• Objective 7 Develop tools to
improve the seismic performance of
buildings and other structures
FEMA Existing Buildings Program
Some key questions

ƒ What are the biggest barriers to the implementation of seismic


rehabilitation, including technical, practical, and regulatory
challenges?

ƒ What is our vision for the future of seismic rehabilitation


research, practice, and implementation?

ƒ What types of guidance, tools and products would best help


achieve this vision?

ƒ Who are our partners? How can we find common objectives and
strategies to improve progress toward earthquake risk reduction
in existing buildings?
FEMA Existing Buildings Program
Next Steps – ATC 71

ƒ Comprehensive effort to analyze/prioritize investment


in guidance development and technology transfer for
existing buildings
ƒ Workshop – Meeting the Challenges of Existing
Buildings
ƒ Develop an Action Plan for Seismic Rehabilitation –
underway
ƒ Updating FEMA’s Seismic Rehabilitation Guidance –
Program Definition and Guidance Development
ƒ New and creative implementation strategies for the
creation and maintenance of rehabilitation guidance
ƒ More effectively leverage FEMA’s resources with our
partners
FEMA Existing Buildings Program
Next Steps – ATC 71

ƒ NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Status Report (Technology, Practice, Policy)

ƒ Action Report

ƒ Implementation
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ NEHRP Workshop (ATC and EERI)

“Meeting the Challenges of Existing


Buildings,” September, 2007

ƒ Participants-Stakeholders:
• Earthquake/Structural Engineering Practitioners
• Regulatory (Building Officials)
• Public Policy/Social Science experts
• Research/Academia (ATC 73)
• Building Owner and Manager/Developers
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Workshop Framework:
• Open Forum, Discussions and Electronic Voting
• Breakout Sessions
• Identification of Issues and Impediments and
priorities:

Technical
Research
Practical
(ATC 73-NSF)
Regulatory/Public Policy
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Technical: Engineering Guidelines, procedures,


analytical procedures, algorithms, forming technical basis for
evaluation and rehabilitation.
ƒ Practical: Application of technical resources to design and
construction practice.
ƒ Regulatory/Public Policy: Building codes, policy
development, legislative, economic, and social issues that
affect building design/construction/investment decisions.
ƒ Research: System, material testing, experimental
investigation, new knowledge development activities related to
seismic behavior of buildings, components, ground motion
and social science issues.
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Plenary Voting: Most Valuable Contribution to


meet EB Seismic Challenges?
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Workshop Plenary Voting: Biggest


Impediment to Mitigation?
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Technical Issues – Strong Support for:

• Case Studies to validate ASCE 31, 41


• Building Rating System that could be understood
by tenants, owners, and other stakeholders
• More clarification of whether acceptance criteria in
the standards are based on testing or expert
opinion.
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Technical Group – Highest Priority Needs


• Focused Case Studies
ƒ Identify shortcomings in the current standards
ƒ Demonstrating rehabilitation technologies
ƒ Generate consistent information for stds comm and public policy
• Transition research into practice
ƒ Translation into practical tools in a more timely manner.
ƒ Process should fit within context of standards adoption practice
• Development of Application Examples
ƒ Example manuals to introduce concepts and terminology:
– ASCE 31 & 41 analysis procedures and design criteria
– Nonlinear modeling and analysis of new and existing elements
• Establish relationships between component response and
system performance
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Practical Issues – Strong Support for:

• Peer review guidelines


• Prescriptive (“simplified”) procedures for select
building types.
• Development of example applications.
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Practical Group – Highest Priority Needs


• Development of building specific loss estimation procedures
• Education and training
ƒ Stakeholders (Owners, tenants, decision makers)
ƒ Engineers, Code Officials, Colleges/Universities
• System to incorporate engineering judgment into standards
• Business continuity guidelines
ƒ Assist decision makers to examine risk and weigh benefits and costs.
• Consistency in code enforcement
ƒ Inconsistencies in interpretation of ASCE 31, 41
• “Incremental” seismic mitigation strategies
• Improve evaluation and rehabilitation of nonstructural components
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Regulatory Issues – Strong Support for:

• Consistency in adoption/enforcement of seismic


provisions across jurisdictions
• Development of a Rating System to communicate
with decision makers the advantages of seismic
rehabilitation
• More access to training for Plan Reviewers
• Peer Review (mandated)
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Regulatory – Highest Priority Needs/Issues

• Policies to encourage seismic rehabilitation – (Rating System)

• Education and training in seismic rehabilitation

• Simplified and/or prescriptive procedures

• Consistency in Plan Review

• Rehabilitation Codes and Standards (consistency in adoption


and enforcement).

• Vacant buildings as a result of mandatory retrofit policies


FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Public Policy Issues – Strong Support for:

• Development of materials to help communities weigh


seismic risks against other risks.

• Advocating that seismic safety is part of “green”


building and sustainability.
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Public Policy– Highest Priority Needs/Issues


• Incentives for seismic rehabilitation

• Voluntary vs. Mandatory “Triggers”

• Costs for seismic rehabilitation

• Social impacts of seismic rehabilitation on vulnerable groups

• Public misconception and education on seismic risk


FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
NEHRP Workshop

ƒ Research– Highest Priority Needs/Issues

• Establishment of a coordinated research program for


existing buildings within NEES.
• Mitigation of building collapse risks.
• Advancement of guidelines and standards- existing
buildings.
• Communication of earthquake risks
• Calibration of engineering tools with realistic data.
• Development of new materials and new building systems.
• Development of building investigative technologies
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ The Project Management Committee (PMC) looked


at the following issues in context of Seismic
Rehabilitation of Existing Buildings in the U.S.:
• Current regulatory structure and public/private
policies that define when and how seismic
evaluations and rehabilitation projects are
undertaken
• Current structural engineering practice involving
existing buildings
• The available technical resources that can be used by
structural engineers to perform seismic evaluations
and rehabilitations
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Policy and Regulation


• Generally the result of experience with past earthquakes
ƒ California – Long Beach, 1933 – Outlawed URM construction
ƒ Los Angeles- retrofit ordinance for Tilt-Ups in 1994, (Northridge)

• Much variation across the country and across jurisdictions


within States

• Mandatory programs
ƒ California URM law (SB 547)
ƒ California SB 1953 – Hospitals (State Legislation)
ƒ City of Berkeley, (Soft Story Ordinance
ƒ City of Los Angeles, (Tilt Up Ordinance)
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Policy and Regulation


• “Triggered” Rehabilitation
ƒ Change of occupancy/use or major
addition
– Most common trigger
– current code
ƒ Alterations
– Not as common, but used in some
jurisdictions
- Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle,
Portland
– Generally use value of permitted
work, or square footage
ƒ Repair of Substantial Damage
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Policy and Regulation

• Voluntary Rehabilitation Policies


ƒ Building Officials will permit this work as long as building is “no less
conforming” when the work is complete.
ƒ Without specific criteria, design and construction quality assurance
becomes unclear.
ƒ Some jurisdictions refer to model code provisions (IEBC, IBC) to guide
voluntary work.
ƒ City of Los Angeles, (wood frame cripple walls, soft stories, hillside
buildings and certain reinforced concrete and reinforced masonry
buildings.
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Policy and Regulation

• Impediments to implementation of regulation


ƒ Economic/Market forces -- Cost $$$

ƒ Additional code requirements imposed on owners

ƒ Lack of knowledge and understanding of the risk

ƒ “Don’t want to know” – Liability concerns


FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Policy and Regulation -


Opportunities

• Building sustainability (“Green”)


movement
• Importance of Historic Preservation
• Post 9/11 and Katrina – Awareness
of the Importance of Community
Resiliency
• Importance of protecting vulnerable
citizens
• Media attention on disasters and
their impacts
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Engineering Practice and Existing Buildings


• Nature/Extent of Current Rehabilitation Work
ƒ Projects range from a minor strengthening and nonstructural to
bringing building into compliance current new code requirements
ƒ Commonly part of broader improvement strategy for existing
facility (change in occupancy, bldg addition, re-use, renovation)
ƒ Project scope is frequently influenced by:
– the nature of the “triggering-mechanism” for the rehabilitation,
– the local jurisdictional mandates
– real or perceived economic value/benefits for the rehabilitation.
ƒ Extent of voluntary seismic rehabilitations varies substantially
– Very few projects in regions of low seismicity
– A little more common in higher seismic areas.
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Engineering Practice and Existing Buildings


• Regional Variation - West
Coast/Intermountain West - California
ƒ Majority of seismic rehab projects are
upgrades triggered by changes in
use/occupancy
ƒ Many mandated rehab programs in CA have
produced a large number of projects incl
URMs, and parapet bracing in Los Angeles
and San Francisco
ƒ Some jurisdictions require compliance with the
California Building Code but are unwilling to
consider other approaches such as ASCE 41
because they’re not referenced in CA Code
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Engineering Practice and Existing Buildings

• Regional Variation - West Coast/Intermountain West


ƒ Washington: Seismic design has long history in the seismically
active region around Seattle, Washington after large seismic
events in the 1940’s. Practitioners report more frequent use of
resources such as ASCE 31 and ASCE 41 (or FEMA 356) as
acceptable alternative rational engineering approaches permitted
by building officials enforcing the Code. Practitioners
ƒ Oregon: and the metropolitan area around Portland, have a
much more recent understanding of seismic risk gained in the
1980’s. Portland practitioners experiences are similar to those in
Seattle with respect to use of ASCE 31 and ASCE 41
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Engineering Practice and Existing


Buildings

• West Coast/Intermountain West -


Utah
ƒ Like Oregon Seismic risk in Salt Lake
City and the potential effects of the
Wasatch Fault discovered more recently
than California and Seattle.
ƒ Large stock of URMs including
residential
ƒ Utah Parapet Ordinance (URMs)
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Engineering Practice and Existing Buildings

• Midwest
ƒ No experience with major earthquakes (New Madrid, 1811)
ƒ Seismic design has not been a significant consideration -
practitioners in the region report that there is strong reluctance to
acknowledge the potential seismic risk.
ƒ Many practitioners today do not consider earthquake shaking to
be a significant
ƒ Some voluntary rehabilitation occurs on a voluntary basis for
industrial facilities and hospitals – work generally driven by
concerns about Business Continuity
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Engineering Practice and Existing Buildings

• East Coast
ƒ The eastern U.S. possesses the oldest building inventory in U.S.,
much of which was constructed without consideration of seismic
design
ƒ Generally (with exception of Charleston, SC) most of the east
coast seismicity is low to moderate
ƒ Where seismic rehabilitation does occur, it is largely triggered by
changes in use and occupancy in a building renovation or
addition and is met with significant resistance
ƒ Some voluntary rehabilitation occurs on a voluntary basis– work
generally driven by concerns about Business Continuity.
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Available Technical Resources - Two Broad


Themes
• Despite the availability of resources targeted to
existing buildings, building codes continue to
trigger and regulate seismic work with reference to
inappropriate provisions for new construction
• Need to create interest in seismic performance
beyond mere safety – including damage control,
business continuity, and community resilience – we
are not there yet
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Impediments to Seismic Evaluation and


Rehabilitation
(Engineering perspective):
• Lack of building specific loss estimation procedures
• Difficult/ineffective communication between
engineers and owners and stakeholders about
seismic rehabilitation (“Owners Manual”).
• Seismic standards limit engineering judgment
• Lack of Business Continuity Guidelines
• Inconsistent code enforcement
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Impediments to Seismic Evaluation and


Rehabilitation:
• Limited training access/opportunities in Seismic
Rehabilitation
• Lack of acceptance of incremental mitigation
strategies for seismic rehabilitation
• Inconsistencies in the evaluation and rehabilitation of
Nonstructural components
• Simplified and/or Prescriptive Procedures in current
standards are inadequate
• Lack of Policies/Guidelines for the Seismic
Rehabilitation of Historic Buildings
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Potential Strategies:

REGION
Method of FEMA WEST
Existing BuildingsMIDWEST
- ATC 71 Project EAST
Initiation Status Report

Mandatory Medium Low Very Low

Triggered Good Medium Medium

Voluntary Excellent Good Low


FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Status Report

ƒ Potential Strategies
• In general, plans or programs that rely on voluntary
evaluations and rehabilitations have the greatest potential
if they are effective in communicating seismic risk in
market terms.
• Programs with the next highest potential for success are
those that are triggered by building regulations.
• Resistance will be greatest to Mandatory programs,
especially where there hasn’t been experience with
earthquakes.
FEMA Existing Buildings - ATC 71 Project
Action Report

ƒ Where should we go next?

• Compile results of Workshop and Status Report


Findings
• Analyze what types of projects are most feasible and
will have the largest impact on the needs and
priorities as expressed by the stakeholder
community.
• Determine how FEMA can best leverage resources
and partnerships to accomplish the goals.
FEMA Existing Buildings Program –
Final Thoughts

ƒ Progress made but there’s a long way to go


ƒ How do we motivate action based on more than
good science?
ƒ Creative solutions that resonate are needed
ƒ Frame the issues in terms people understand and
relate to economically and emotionally as well as
technically