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RE: Building Standards, Aase ruling

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Wasn't that quote by Dr. Botwin?

Sharon Robertson Bonds, PE
Salerno/Livingston Architects
363 Fifth Avenue, Third Floor
San Diego, California  92101
(619) 234-7471

	-----Original Message-----
	From:	Paul Feather [SMTP:pfeather(--nospam--at)]
	Sent:	Wednesday, April 04, 2001 12:11 PM
	To:	seaint(--nospam--at)
	Subject:	Re: Building Standards, Aase ruling

	I can't speak for all, but we use the same approach and standards on
	projects, commercial or custom residential.  My residential
experience is
	all fairly high end (6k to 20k sq. ft.), I have never worked on
	townhomes, etc.

	I think one part of your perception that commercial structures are
held to a
	higher standard is that in the code (UBC) they are.  There are all
kinds of
	exceptions and reduced requirements for residential R-3
construction, in
	virtually every section of the code, not to mention the conventional
	construction provisions for wood framed structures (i.e.

	It is not that we the engineering community hold these structures to
a lower
	standard, but the governing bodies hold these structures to a lower
	standard.  I can see where there would be a tremendous amount of
	by the builders and developers of large residential projects towards
	attempt by the design professional to ignore the exceptions and
	higher standards.  The requests for substitutions and changes would
	bury you, or the cost would be so much higher that the GC /
Developer might
	find paying someone else to design to the permissible lower
standards is
	more cost effective and remove you from the project.

	The same thing occurs on commercial structures in limited instances.
	truss substitutions come to mind.  I have even had P/T parking
	where a precast outfit will bid the project including re-engineering
	whole thing with the claim that the overall cost will be
competitive.  The
	fact that you may, as I do, prefer cast in place P/T to precast as a
	superior building system will have very little effect on the final
	if indeed the precast outfit provides lower numbers.

	As a side note, I am frequently astonished at the absurd approach to
	analysis that many GC's use.  The cost will compare element to
element, but
	completely neglect additional labor and components that may be
required by
	other trades as a result of a cost savings on this one...  The
	contractor that looks at overall systems costs is not the rule in my
	experience, particularly in lowrise industrial / commercial

	As my college professor used to say, the principle of conservation
of grief
	is as immutable as conservation of energy.

	Paul Feather
	----- Original Message -----
	From: "Dan Goodrich" <dang(--nospam--at)>
	To: <seaint(--nospam--at)>
	Sent: Wednesday, April 04, 2001 9:18 AM
	Subject: Re: Aase ruling

	> This brings up an interesting point.  There is a perception
	> out there that commercial projects should be built to a
	> higher standard than residential.  Shouldn't they be the
	> same?  I've designed homes that are significantly larger
	> than some of the commercial projects I've worked on.
	> I realize that there will be differences based on
	> occupancy and other related matters.
	> Are we as an engineering community holding commercial
	> jobs to a higher standard than homes?  One example I
	> can think of would be the amount of reinforcing required
	> in foundation walls.
	> Dan Goodrich, P.E.
	> ----- Original Message -----
	> From: "Neil Moore" <nmoore(--nospam--at)>
	> To: <seaint(--nospam--at)>
	> Sent: Tuesday, April 03, 2001 8:33 PM
	> Subject: RE: Aase ruling
	> > Jason and Dennis:
	> >
	> > On the other hand,  I had a take-over project with 46
townhouses.  23
	> > uphill and 23 downhill, basically two plans, each alike.  The
	> > framing and exterior stucco completed.  Although every one of
the  plans
	> > were the same, it appeared to be a different crew on each one.
	> >
	> > Took us three years to complete the project, including putting a
	> structural
	> > designer on the site to straightened out all of the glitches.
	> > superintendent,  who was from a central California mountain
	> > us of "commercially" engineering the buildings.  Of course the
	> > a 1000 feet from the San Andreas fault and was on a high bluff
	> > ocean.
	> >
	> > The sherriff came in one day and took him off the project.  This
	> > sometime after he had threatened one of my engineers.
	> >
	> > Neil Moore,  S.E.
	> > neil moore and associates
	> >
	> >
	> >
	> >
	> >
	> >