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Masonry half stresses and strength design

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Strength design of masonry seems to give slightly more economical answer than working stress design, especially for tall walls.  I am evaluating an existing building that wasn't special inspected and would like to extend the half-stress concept to strength design.  I am doing this by using half of f`m for calculating moment capacity but allowing full steel stresses.  This effectively doubles the depth of the Whitney stress block in the moment capacity calc while using only half the allowable stress.  The impact of this approach seems to be a smaller penalty than using half-stresses for working stress.  Translation, I seem to be getting relatively stronger walls with strength design over working stress.
Has anyone else tried this or do you have any thoughts on this approach?  I realize this is inconsistent with the original design procedures but it seems rational to me.  Am I missing anything else?
Jake Watson, P.E.
Salt Lake City, UT