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Re: Philosophy of School Design - Was: Long Beach CA -- March 10, 1933

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Eric Green,

I agree with Bill Cain's email comments concerning the success of the Field Act.

What are you missing?  You stated that you had children.  Unless they go to private schools or are home taught,  it is my understanding that children in California are required to go to the K-12 public school in their school district.  If the children are required by State law to attend the public school in their school district with a few exceptions,  then the students deserve a higher level of protection because of the enforced attendance.

The public schools are designed using a process that includes slightly higher design standards, approval by the State of the construction documents that have been reviewed by experienced State structural engineers, and observation of the construction by the design professional as well as State structural engineers, including written certification by all the design professionals that the construction is in substantial compliance with the construction documents.  Violation of any the provisions of the Field Act are considered a FELONY.

What is the basis for your statement that an office building you designed and was approved by the local building department with the issuance of a building permit would kill 100's of people just because you used a lower factor of safety in the design of the office building as compared with a public school?

I am looking forward to your reply.


Frank E. McClure  March 10, 2003
California S. E. 649
Former member of the Division of the State Architect (DSA) Advisory Board.