Although the campus of the University of California, Berkeley has never been damaged by a major earthquake, it has undertaken one of the most comprehensive and costly seismic retrofit programs in history. After great earthquakes whole cities have been reconstructed and surviving buildings retrofitted, but at the University of California, Berkeley, it was the threat of future earthquakes that galvanized the administration, the faculty and staff to act. As of the centennial of the 1906 earthquake, most of the hazardous buildings have been retrofitted or demolished and replaced with new buildings. The seismic program coordinated structural improvements with deferred maintenance to improve the quality of classrooms, libraries and laboratories across the campus. In some cases it was more economical and more programmatically appropriate to replace poor buildings and new facilities. The campus stands as an impressive monument to earthquake safety that will save thousands of lives when the expected magnitude 7-plus earthquake occurs.
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