The relationship between the building life cycle of commercial properties and seismic adaptation in Wellington CBD (2020)
Type of ContentPosters
- Posters 
AuthorsBolomope, Muhammed, Filippova, Olgashow all
Earthquake fatality is a function of building vulnerability. Several studies that have investigated seismic disruptions have revealed that the severity of earthquakes is influenced by vulnerable buildings, especially unreinforced masonry (URM) structures. Also referred to as earthquake-prone buildings (EPB), most vulnerable buildings have been identified to be multi-storey and were constructed before World War II. In New Zealand, like other earthquake-prone countries, attempts are being made to reduce the susceptibility of the existing building stock to seismic disruptions. As a result, Pre-1976 buildings are required by law to be strengthened to at least 34% of the current new building standard (NBS) or risk being demolished. However, the financial burden of adhering to the stipulated standard is ominous, particularly for commercial building owners who seem to justify seismic strengthening by their ability to recoup commensurate return on investment through sustainable rents or leases. Consequently, the rate of compliance of commercial property owners to seismic strengthening is market-driven and below the expectation of policymakers. Recognising that seismic strengthening can be combined with other forms of building adaptation (e.g., renovation, refurbishment, remodelling, rehabilitation and recycling of the original building structure or components ) to minimise the associated cost of maintaining a building throughout its lifecycle, this study investigates the relationship between building lifecycle and seismic adaptation. Adopting multivariate, descriptive statistical analysis of multi-storey commercial buildings, this study leveraged the city scope database and wellington building consent information from 1995 to 2019 to evaluate documented adaptations on commercial buildings in Wellington CBD. Insights from this study will serve as a basis for policy recommendations that could enhance the commitment of commercial building owners to seismic adaptation.