Residential Seismic Design Using Viscous Dampers

Viscous dampers dissipate the energy of a seismic event by forcing a fluid through an orifice during deflection in either direction along the length of the damper. The dampers need to deflect to dampen the energy but also need to be strong enough to limit the seismic drift to levels that will not damage finishes during the maximum expected earthquake for the site.

By |2019-08-27T22:43:14-08:00August 26th, 2019|

Engineered to a Fault

...But the site of the luxurious, modern, three-story house was also located in the Bay Area just a stone’s throw from the San Andreas Fault. The owners not only wanted the structure to keep their family safe in the event of a severe earthquake, but also for it to survive the seismic shocks.

By |2019-06-18T23:34:35-08:00December 7th, 2017|

What I Love About Being an Architect (Part 2)

Being an Architect has many satisfying aspects, but one of my favorites is being able to see your vision for a space become real before your eyes. On a recent trip to Boston, I had the chance to see the very first house I designed: a custom residence for my Mom. Completed over 20 years earlier, Mom and her husband still love living in the spaces we crafted together.

By |2019-05-26T21:17:39-08:00October 17th, 2014|

Advances In Seismic Technology (Part 2)

...this project’s goal of “Earthquake Safety” took us further than ever before into the realm of the “well-made”. The technological advances required to meet this goal ultimately expanded our team to include: a military grade hardware supplier, a Ph.D. in earthquake Geotechnical Engineering, Finite Element Analysis software and the World Leader in Earthquake Monitoring.

By |2019-05-26T00:47:19-08:00September 4th, 2014|

Inside the Walls

If you have ever taken a hammer to a wall, you've no doubt answered that question for yourself. Removing the skin of a building from the inside always reveals a narrative about the making of a building, a connection to the history of a place. That connection is certainly one of the most powerful and compelling aspects year's Dickens House.

By |2019-06-19T00:34:09-08:00December 15th, 2012|

Architectural Record: “The Big Apple”

"Before switching to the Mac, I used to struggle with AutoCAD and the blue screen of death," he says. "Now I use ArchiCAD, and I sometimes find myself sitting there working and laughing out loud at how easy it is. I don't regret switching at aIl.” He particularly likes ArchiCAD's 2D/3D integration, which gives him the seamless kind of experience in production that he was seeking.

By |2019-06-19T01:04:10-08:00December 15th, 2012|