FEMA-273 Seismic Rehabilitation Guidelines: The Next Step - Verification

by Ronald Hamburger

Hamburger, Ronald (1997). FEMA-273 Seismic Rehabilitation Guidelines: The Next Step - Verification. SMIP97 Seminar on Utilization of Strong-Motion Data, p. 51 - 70.

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FEMA-2731274, Guidelines and Commentary for Seismic Rehabilitation of Buildings (ATC, 1996a., b.) represents a landmark in the practice of structural/seismic engineering. In addition to providing a long-needed consensus basis for the design of building seismic upgrades, it also is a fist major step towards the development of performance- based design procedures for seismic resistance. Under the Guidelines, design is performed with the expectation that for specified levels of ground motion intensity, building performance will remain within anticipated levels. Performance levels are defined in terms of permissible damage to individual structural and nonstructural components and are intended to provide specific defined margins of safety. In order to accommodate this performance-based approach new analytical procedures and acceptance criteria were developed. While the Guidelines represent a significant advance in the practice of earthquake engineering, calibration of the analysis procedures and acceptance criteria to real building performance is clearly needed. The use of strong motion data obtained from instrumented buildings experiencing strong earthquake ground shaking will be an essential part of this process.