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TMS 402/ASCE 4/ACI 530 Pilaster Question

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Are all vertical load supporting elements columns when it comes to masonry?


Specifically, I have a 16” square pilaster supporting a trellis. The plan checker considers this element a column and is insisting that I provide ties at 8”. I contend that the pilaster is primarily a flexural member and that fa/F’m is very, very small. I seem to recall this in the concrete section (P<=0.10f’cAg or something like that), but I don’t really see a definition of a column in the masonry section of the code. Of course, I don’t yet have TMS 402, so I’m kind of flying blind.


Any clarifications would be appreciated.




T. William (Bill) Allen, S.E.


Consulting Structural Engineers
V (949) 248-8588 F(949) 209-2509