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wood / gyp board shear walls for resisting seismic forces

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We are designing a 4-story, wood-framed hotel with the 2 bottom stories having a masonry veneer.  We are designing to the 2003 IBC in a relatively low seismic region.  We want to use wood-sheathed shear walls at the ends of building and take advantage of the numerous gyp board-sheathed walls to resist wind and seismic forces.  But according to Table 2306.4.5, footnote a, we can’t use gyp board walls to resist seismic forces because we have 2 stories of masonry veneer and according to IBC section 2305.1.5, we can’t even use wood-sheathed shear walls to resist seismic forces because we have 2 stories of masonry veneer and the building is over 2 stories high.  Even though wind controls the lateral force analysis, we’re detailing for seismic to comply with the code. 

 

Are we reading the code correctly?  What is the reasoning behind the code not allowing gyp board or even wood-sheathed shear walls to resist horizontal forces contributed by masonry or concrete construction?

 

 

Bruce D. Holcomb, PE, SE

Structural Engineer & Vice President

Butler, Rosenbury & Partners

319 North Main, Suite 200

Springfield, MO 65806

417-865-6100

417-865-6102