CITY OF LOS ANGELES
APARTMENT OWNERS & PROPERTY MANAGERS!
NEW MANDATORY SOFT STORY RETROFIT ORDINANCE
On October 9, 2015 Los Angeles City Council adopted Ordinance No.183893 - Amending Division 93 and 95 of Article I of Chapter IX of the LAMC to establish mandatory standards for earthquake hazard reduction in existing wood-frame buildings with soft, weak, or open-front walls and existing non-ductile concrete buildings, and amending Sections 152.02, 152.04, 152.05 and 152.08 of Article 2 of Chapter XV of the LAMC to grant authority to the Rental Adjustment Commission to modify Tenant Habitability Program requirements for purposes of implementing seismic retrofit mandates. Ordinance is set to be in effect starting November 22, 2015
The provisions of this division shall apply to all existing buildings of wood-frame construction, or wood-frame portions thereof, where:
A permit for construction of a new building was applied for before January 1, 1978, or, if no permit can be located, the structure is determined by the Department to have been built under building code standards enacted before January 1, 1978; and 1
The ground floor portion of the structure contains parking or other similar open floor space that causes soft, weak or open-front wall lines, and there exists one or more stories above.
EXCEPTIONS: This division shall not apply to any building containing three dwelling units or less if the building is used solely for residential purposes. Moreover, notwithstanding any provision of this Code, compliance with this division shall not require existing electrical, plumbing, mechanical or fire-safety systems to be altered to comply with existing code unless they constitute a hazard to life or property.
Time Limits for Compliance
The owner of a building within the scope of this division shall comply with its requirements within the following time limits:
1. Within two (2) year after service of the order described in Section 91.9306, submit to the Department for review and approval:
a. A structural analysis and plans which shall demonstrate the building, as is, meets or exceeds the requirements set forth in
Section 91.9309; or
b. A structural analysis and plans which shall demonstrate that the proposed structural alteration of the building meets or
exceeds the requirements set forth in Section 91.9309; or
c. Plans for the demolition of the building.
2. Within three and half (3.5) years after service of the order, obtain all necessary permits for rehabilitation or demolition.
3. Within seven (7) years after service of the order, complete construction or demolition work under all necessary permits.
Time limits for compliance shall be based on the service date of the original order from the Department. Transfer of title shall not change compliance dates.
Landlords and tenants will share the costs of retrofitting equally. Landlords can pass half the retrofitting costs to tenants through rent increases over a 10-year period, with a maximum increase of $38 per month.
HOW WE CAN HELP
We are your single source to design and installation of seismic force resisting systems for your soft story apartment building. Our in house engineers and contractors work together as a team to provide the most cost effective solutions by shortening the lines of communication, reducing the misunderstanding, minimizing "phone tag" delays and improving the overall organization of the project. (Be advised that it is essential the construction process be completed within 30 calendar days to avoid costly relocation.)
We will analyze the existing structure and propose the most cost effective systems to be used. Then we will engineer, prepare construction drawings, and process it with Building and Safety Department for permits. We will prepare and process Tenant Habitability Plan (THP) with the Housing Department and pull the building permit. Finally, after acquiring the permits, we will complete the construction and remove the building from the City’s list to comply.
We are FEMA trained and a preferred contractor for California's Brace&Bolt program.