An Assessment to Benchmark the Seismic Performance of a Code-Conforming Reinforced Concrete Moment-Frame Building, PEER Report 2007-12


This report describes a state-of -the-art performance-based earthquake engineering methodology that is used to assess the seismic performance of a four-story reinforced concrete (RC) office building that is generally representative of low-rise office buildings constructed in highly seismic regions of California. This “benchmark” building is considered to be located at a site in the Los Angeles basin, and it was designed with a ductile RC special moment-resisting frame as its seismic lateral system that was designed according to modern building codes and standards. The building’s performance is quantified in terms of structural behavior up to collapse, structural and nonstructural damage and a ssociated repair costs, and the risk of fatalities and their associated economic costs. To account for different building configurations that may be designed in practice to meet requirements of building size and use, eight structural design alternatives are used in the performance assessments.

Our performance assessments account for important sources of uncertainty in the ground motion hazard, the structural response, structur al and nonstructural damage, repair costs, and life-safety risk. The ground motion hazard characterization employs a site-specific probabilistic seismic hazard analysis and the evaluation of controlling seismic sources (through disaggregation) at seven ground motion levels (e ncompassing return periods ranging from 7 to 2475 years). Innovative procedures for ground motion selection and scaling are used to develop acceleration time history suites corresponding to each of the seven ground motion levels. Structural modeling utilizes both “fiber” models and “plastic hinge” models. Structural modeling uncertainties are investigated through comparison of these two modeling approaches, and through variations in structural component modeling parameters (stiffness, deformation capacity, degradation, etc.). Structural and nonstructural damage (fragility) models are based on a combination of test data, observations from post-earthquake reconnaissance, and expert opinion. Structural damage and repair costs are modeled for the RC beams, columns, and slab-column connections. Damage and associated repa ir costs are considered for some nonstructural building components, including wallboard partitions , interior paint, exte rior glazing, ceilings, sprinkler systems, and elevators. The risk of casualties and the associated economic costs are evaluated based on the risk of structural collapse, combined with recent models on earthquake fatalities in collapsed buildings and accepted economic modeling guidelines for the value of human life in loss and cost-benefit studies.

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Curt B. Haselton
Christine A. Goulet
Judith Mitrani-Reiser
James L. Beck
Gregory G. Deierlein
Keith A. Porter
Jonathan P. Stewart
Ertugrul Taciroglu
Publication date: 
August 3, 2007
Publication type: 
Technical Report
Haselton, C.B., Goulet, C. A., Mitrani-Reiser, J., Beck, J. L., Deierlein, G. G., Porter, K. A., Stewart, J. P., & Taciroglu, E. (2007). An Assessment to Benchmark the Seismic Performance of a Code-Conforming Reinforced Concrete Moment-Frame Building, PEER Report 2007-12. Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center, University of California, Berkeley, CA.