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Improving Construction Practices

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A number of recent discussion threads have touched on the topic of improving
construction practices per the seismic design codes we already have.  The that
end, I thought I'd bring to everyone's attention a recent joint venture activity
between the Applied Technology council (ATC) and SEAOC, funded by the California
Seismic Safety Commission with Proposition 122 moneys.  The unique feature of
this curriculum is that it is designed to educate both design professionals and
those who enforce building codes.  Chris Rojahn (ATC) was the Project Manager.
Several SEAOC members participated in this project, myself included.

In 1999, there were two training seminars given around California using the
materials, attended by 161 engineers, 34 architects, 57 building officials and
inspectors.  I'm sure if there was enough interest expressed, ATC would be
interested in conducting more.  Even if you didn't attend the training seminars,
the materials described below would be a valuable addition to your bookshelf.

This program was discussed on the front page of the September, 1999 SEAOC Plan
Review.  The following was excerpted from the ATC web site (,
Project ATC-48;


The joint venture partnership of the Applied Technology Council (ATC) and the
Structural Engineers Association of California (SEAOC) recently developed a
"Built to Resist Earthquakes", a training curriculum to improve the quality of
the seismic design and construction of buildings.  The curriculum was developed
to serve as a resource for continuing education of architects, engineers,
building officials, and inspectors.   Bound in a three-ring notebook, the
curriculum consists of several hundred pages of training materials pertaining to
the seismic design and retrofit of (1) wood-frame buildings, (2) concrete and
masonry construction, and (3) nonstructural components.

The curriculum contains:

Detailed, illustrated, instructional material (lessons) describing how to
improve the quality of seismic design, inspection, construction and retrofit. A
detailed description of the lesson structure can be downloaded as a file;

Six multi-part, two-color Briefing Papers -- concise, easy-to-read, summary
overviews of important issues and topics intended to facilitate improvement in
the quality of seismic design, inspection, and construction; and

Job Aids -- checklists and other tools to facilitate job performance, including
construction observation, special inspection, and quality assurance procedures.

Copies of the ATC/SEAOC Joint Venture Training Curriculum can be obtained from

Applied Technology Council
555 Twin Dolphin Drive, Suite 550
Redwood City, California 94065
(phone, 650/595-1542
fax, 650/593-2320
e-mail, atc(--nospam--at); web site,
Price: $75.00 per copy (within California, please add applicable local sales
tax; for destinations outside the United States, please contact ATC for the cost
of shipping).


Rick Drake, SE
Fluor Daniel, Aliso Viejo