On May 20, 2019, the City of Pasadena approved and adopted Soft Story Retrofit Ordinance 7345, making it mandatory to strengthen existing wood-frame buildings with soft, weak, or open-front walls.

The new Pasadena retrofitting program applies to all existing buildings of wood-frame construction, or wood-frame portions where:

  1. A permit for construction of a new building was applied for on or before November 12, 1976, or if no permit can be located, the structure is determined by the Building Official to have been built under Building Code standards enacted prior to November 12, 1976, and

  2. The Ground Floor or basement portion of the structure contains parking or other similar open floor space that causes Soft, Weak, Open-Front Wall Lines.

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EARTHQUAKE RETROFIT In November 2015 Ordinance 183893 and 184081 was enacted such that all structures below current standards must be retrofitted to comply with current Building Codes related to structural seismic thresholds, affecting nearly 13,500 Los Angeles buildings.

Have your received an order to comply?

A soft-story building is a structure which has a weaker first floor and is unable to carry the weight of the stories above during an earthquake. The first floor generally would have large openings in the perimeter walls such as garages, tuck under parking or even large windows.

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RETROFITTING IS THE LAW

In November 2015 Ordinance 183893 and 184081 was enacted such that all structures below current standards must be retrofitted to comply with current Building Codes related to structural seismic thresholds, affecting nearly 13,500 Los Angeles buildings.

SAVE YOUR PROPERTIES
SAVE ALL LIVES

Retrofit is an improvement to your building by altering or adding any structural elements.

The purpose of this program is to reduce the risk of injury or loss of life that may result from the effects of earthquakes on wood frame soft-story buildings. In the Northridge Earthquake, many wood frame soft- story buildings caused loss of life, injury, and property damage. This program creates a guide for property owners on strengthening their building to improve performance during an earthquake.

TIME LIMITS TO COMPLY

  • Within two (2) years after the service date of the Order to Comply, a structural analysis and plans to either retrofit or demolish, or proof of previous retrofit shall be submitted to the Department for review if the building meets the minimum requirements of this ordinance.
     

  • Within three-and-a-half (3 ½) years after the service date of the Order to Comply, obtain all permits for retrofit or demolition of the building.
     

  • Within seven (7) years after the service date of the Order to Comply, complete construction or demolition work and finalize permits.

Renovated Building
Building Under Construction

2 Years

Submit proof of previous retrofit, current retrofit plans, or demolition plans

tractor destroying building

3.5 Years

Obtain Permit to Start Demolition or Construction

Low Round Stage

7 Years

Complete Retrofit Construction

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