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Re: Local disaster recovery Questions

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Neil, Nels,

As I understand your postings you are talking about the threat to society's built heritage resources. The threats you mention for your location are seismic activity and economic pressures. Here in Calgary (The media keep bombarding us with the news that we are the second hottest real estate market in the world, second only to Tokyo, Japan.) the pressure is mainly economic. In either case the loss of the buildings is just as real. Once they're gone they can not be replaced.

As I understand your questions, Neil, they are as follows (in my own words): a.) "Would you be willing to volunteer your expertise to help save some of our built heritage resources?" b.) "What other ideas do you have to accomplish this?" and "Can you do something to get your colleagues and business associates to help?" I guess the easy (and most common) answers to your questions are: "no; nothing at all; and I doubt it."

There is a way that my son and I have found (or, more correctly, my son has found) to save some of these buildings. We buy these properties under conditional contract; check out the viability of the project both technically and economically; and, if everything checks out, we complete the redevelopment, lease it up, and sell it to finance the nest project. What this means is that instead of being a lawyer and an engineer with some other partners we have become developers.

       I hope you find this a useful suggestion.

Regards,

H. Daryl Richardson

----- Original Message ----- From: "Nels Roselund" <njineer(--nospam--at)att.net>
To: <seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org>
Sent: Friday, April 21, 2006 4:26 PM
Subject: RE: Local disaster recovery Questions


Neil,

I accidentally deleted your message, so I apologize if I respond
incompletely or inappropriately to your email.

Following the 1987 Whittier Narrows EQ and the 1989 Loma Prieta EQ, a number of historic buildings were lost. Some were lost due to actions of Building
Officials who, in their concern for public safety, and possibly lack of
sensitivity to the cultural value of historic buildings, authorized the
demolition of historic buildings without seeking input from those who might
have helped to work out alternatives to demolition.  Other buildings were
lost because their owners had determined that demolition was more in their
interest than stabilization and repair.

At the time, while working for or in behalf of historic preservations
organizations I participated in advocating for repair and strengthening of
historic buildings.  In some cases, demolition of the building was in the
owners' best interest, regardless of the cost of repair, and claims of
irreparable structural damage seemed the expedient route to accomplishing
their purposes. In those cases, my proposals for repair were unappreciated
and disputed by the owners.  In other cases, my proposals for repair and
strengthening were greatly appreciated. I especially value the memories of
the pastor of a Hispanic congregation whose church had been scheduled for
demolition because of earthquake damage -- I proposed a repair system that
was implemented; whenever we meet, he shakes my hand with a big smile and
tells me, "You saved our church".

I plan to be available again for recovery assistance should disaster strike
historic buildings in our area.

Roy Harthorne is author of a booklet, "Temporary Shoring & Stabilization of
Earthquake Damaged Historic Buildings", published 1998 by California
Building Officials [CALBO].  With excellent input by Structural Engineer
David Hammond, that publication gives guidance and references to other
publications that will help with practical, effective shoring and bracing
for earthquake damaged structures. It will be useful to Building Officials,
after future quakes, giving guidance for alternatives to immediate
demolition that may gain time for historic buildings to be evaluated, and
possibly saved from demolition.

Nels Roselund, SE
South San Gabriel, CA
njineer(--nospam--at)att.net





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