Big Steps Before the Big One

Posted by on Feb 14, 2017 in Seft In The News | No Comments

The City Club of Portland has produced a report entitled “Big Steps Before the Big One: How the Portland area can bounce back after a major earthquake”.  Building upon the findings of the Oregon Resilience Plan and other on-going resilience initiatives, this report focuses on five areas of social and physical infrastructure to develop practical recommendations so that the Portland area can achieve higher resilience over time and rebound rapidly after an inevitable M9.0 Cascadia earthquake. 

City Club’s 14-member research committee spent 9 months interviewing more than 80 witnesses and developing recommendations to strengthen physical and social infrastructure in the region.  Kent Yu, Principal of SEFT Consulting Group was invited on May 24, 2016 to co-present an overview of the Oregon Resilience Plan.   SEFT Consulting Group’s work with the Beaverton School District has been referenced in the report, as an inspiring example of deliberately incorporating a community’s needs into construction of public facilities to progress the resilience of the community at large, and the state as a whole.  Designed above and beyond the code’s minimum requirements and built at a very modest increase in initial construction costs, all seven news schools will serve as emergency shelters within 72 hours and re-open for education within 30 days.   

This work has also inspired the Oregon Seismic Safety Policy Advisory Commission (OSSPAC) to develop a code change proposal that intends to define portions (gymnasiums, cafeterias, and large multi-purpose rooms) of new school construction in high seismic risk areas as Earthquake Relief Shelters.  The shelters would be designed to meet Risk Category IV requirements, and would be built with hookups for emergency power and water. 

You can read the full City Club report here:
Big Steps Before the Big One: How the Portland area can bounce back after a major earthquake