Benefit–Cost Evaluation of Seismic Risk Mitigation in Existing Non-ductile Concrete Buildings

  • Gregory Deierlein
  • Abbie Liel
Part of the Geotechnical, Geological and Earthquake Engineering book series (GGEE, volume 13)


The risks of damage and collapse to older (non-ductile) reinforced concrete buildings and the cost-effectiveness of seismic retrofit are investigated through analyses of archetypical designs representative of construction in California prior to the introduction of more rigorous seismic design requirements in the mid-1970s. These risks for older buildings are compared to those in buildings that are designed to modern building code provisions that employ capacity design and ductile detailing requirements. The comparisons indicate that older non-ductile buildings have expected annual economic losses that are about twice those of the ductile buildings and risks of collapse and fatalities that are about 35 times higher. The cost effectiveness of seismic retrofit is examined to reduce damage and life safety risks. Considering the monetary benefits of both reduced damage and lives saved, these cost–benefit comparisons justify retrofit costs of up to about 20–40% of the building replacement value, implying that in most cases the retrofit of non-ductile concrete buildings would be cost-effective.


Ground Motion Reinforce Concrete Spectral Acceleration Reinforce Concrete Frame Incremental Dynamic Analysis 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work has been supported by the PEER Center through the Earthquake Engineering Research Centers Program of the National Science Foundation (under award number EEC-9701568). The authors would also like to acknowledge valuable input from Curt Haselton, Judith Mitrani-Reiser, Marc Ramirez, Evan Reis, Ashley Spear, and Jackie Steiner.


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Copyright information

© Springer Netherlands 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Civil and Environmental EngineeringStanford UniversityStanfordUSA
  2. 2.Civil, Environmental and Architectural EngineeringUniversity of ColoradoBoulderUSA

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