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CONCRETE-Construction Joint in Shearwall

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In addition to roughening the joint suggested by Mr. Richard Phillips, 
several alternates for shear transfer are permissible in the Building 
Code:

Consideration should be given to design using shear-friction under Code 
Section 1911.7 for in-plane shear transfer. 

In certain instance of very high design shear strength demand combined 
with low axial strength, properly developed reinforcing bars positioned 
and orientated at 45 degree to the horizontal joint may be designed to 
transfer the required shear strength in direct tension.

Finally, shear keys may also be designed to transfer shear forces 
through bearing strength. However, I would not suggest shear keys be 
spaced closer than two times the spacing of vertical bars. Length of the 
shear key must be designed and capable to deliver the required tributary 
shear strength. Good luck.

James S. Lai, S.E.