The boxes are unpacked, the dust has settled, and MHP officially has a new home!
Though we haven’t traveled far, our new location brings with it a revitalized sense of creativity and a beautiful environment worth bragging about. Located within “Douglas Park”, a new state-of-the-art, mixed-use business environment just minutes from Long Beach Airport, our new collaborative space provides our firm with endless opportunities for continued growth.
As you can see, we are thoroughly enjoying our new home…
Although some may have taken “home” a bit too literally…
Needless to say, all of us here at MHP are energized and excited to cultivate fresh ideas and expand our horizons, while continuing to provide the excellent service and expertise that is synonymous with the MHP name.
Come on by…Our doors are always open!
We are pleased to announce our most recent Structural Systems Presentation for AIA Orange County. on March 12, 2013 MHP’s Vice President and Partner Ken O’Dell, S.E., LEED AP will present an evening of discussion on structural considerations relevant to interns, designers, architects and members of the architecture profession planning to sit for the Structural Systems section of the ARE. The discussion will review structural codes and loading criteria, materials of construction, and structural systems and configurations. Specific areas to be presented include:
-Criteria for Dead, Live and Lateral (Earthquake and Wind) loading
-Material of Constructions (Steel, Concrete, Masonry, and Timber) including review of their differing benefits
-Review of vertical and lateral load resisting systems including foundations
-Audience participation (Q&A)
Time: 6PM-8PM (March 12, 2013)
Where: AIA Orange County
4100 Birch, Suite 300
Newport Beach, CA 92660
Tickets are available via the AIA Orange County website.
AIA Members: $20 Non-Members: $50
Will-Call (No Additional Fee)
c|a ARCHITECTS and MHP Structural Engineers Designing New Pavilion for the MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute at Long Beach Memorial
Long Beach, California — Construction has begun on the Todd Cancer Pavilion on the campus of Long Beach Memorial designed by Long Beach-based c|a ARCHITECTS and MHP Structural Engineers. The program for the iconic new building, which will serve as the welcoming entry to the MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute, a nationally recognized cancer care center, includes outpatient treatment, breast imaging, doctors’ clinics, conference space and more. The project also involves the renovation of the second and third floors of an existing administration building that will contain the new outpatient facility. The entire project is scheduled to complete construction in March 2013.
“With the addition of this entry pavilion the MemorialCare Todd Cancer Institute has a new presence in the community,” said David Smith, project manager for c|a ARCHITECTS. “The light-filled, two-story lobby with its warm woods, natural materials and views to the outside will provide a patient-friendly, healing environment.” The vaulting lobby space houses a first floor reception and waiting room. The open, sculptural staircase leads to the second and third floors that connect to 66,000 square feet of remodeled space in the existing building. Breast imaging and research, a resource center and staff spaces will be located on the second floor and an infusion center, infusion pharmacy, and clinic space on third. There also is a healing garden on the roof of the new pavilion, which will provide a respite for patients and family.
“Although the Pavilion connects to an older building on the medical center campus, the distinctive design of the building with its multiple roof levels and large glazed window walls creates a strong, highly visible identity for the Institute,” notes Rick Beall, MHP project structural engineer. By analyzing the existing structure and incorporating the same method of lateral resistance for the addition (a steel moment frame) the design avoided the need for a seismic joint between the new entry and the existing structure, which provided for a cost savings to the project.
In addition to the structural building design, MHP provided equipment anchorage for all new mechanical and medical equipment.
Both firms have long-standing working relationships with Long Beach Memorial, which is part of the MemorialCare Health System, and have completed multiple projects on the growing Long Beach campus. www.memorialcare.org/long_beach
c|a ARCHITECTS is an architecture, planning and interior design firm that provides expert design solutions for healthcare institutions. www.c-aarchitects.com
MHP Structural Engineers is a structural engineering firm with expertise in structural design, seismic risk and business continuity, forensic engineering and equipment anchorage. www.mhpse.com
In last week’s edition of the Disaster Due Diligence newsletter, we discussed how lawmakers and Alabama’s Emergency Management Agency (“EMA”) are trying to remove barriers to installation of smaller, private shelters holding 12 or fewer people. The direction from FEMA and public agencies is clear – if you are vulnerable to natural or man-made disasters, you should prepare adequate supplies and create a plan to sustain yourself, your family, pets, etc. for several days or more. Upon consideration, we recognize that perceived barriers may be preventing individuals, businesses, or cities in Alabama from taking the initiative toward preparedness prior to tornado season. The knee-jerk reaction we see after impactful disasters is often an avalanche of discussions with potential solutions to mitigate future risk. However, in some cases, quickly passing legislation doesn’t allow a reasonable amount of time to adequately assess the contributing factors to structural and other systems failures, nor does it allow time for the development of definitive approaches toward preaction.
One barrier to preparedness identified in the original article is “red tape,” or “excessive regulation or rigid conformity to formal rules that is considered redundant or bureaucratic and hinders or prevents action or decision-making.” But the responsibility for the burden of preparedness is not so easily shunted. Rather than focusing on the limitations of working through the red tape, it is perhaps better to expend energy on implementing actionable solutions by discussing the possibilities and implications of designing and building “brick and mortar” or traditionally constructed shelters under current building code and agency requirements.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (“FEMA”) and other agencies have numerous current publications readily available to the general public. General building guidelines for storm shelters can be found in a pamphlet titled “Storm Shelters”, produced by the National Weather Service in Huntsville, Alabama, which presents three main types of storm shelters, as well as references to additional resources. In August 2008, FEMA released the Third Edition of FEMA 320, titled “Taking Shelter From the Storm: Building a Safe Room for Your Home or Small Business.” This comprehensive guide takes a home or small business building owner through the process of understanding hazards in the area and planning a safe room, with additional resources detailing approximate construction costs and sample floor plans. The intention of the publication is geared toward individuals and their builder/contractors to create safe room designs that provide protection from extreme winds and flying debris.
A related guide, FEMA 361, titled ”Design and Construction Guidance for Community Safe Rooms”, includes detailed guidance for construction of these structures. Additionally, FEMA’s Safe Room webpage coalesces some of the broader details of FEMA 320 into a more accessible format. These resources can be used and plans implemented TODAY while state regulatory agencies cut through the bureaucratic process of ensuring reasonable standards for pre-manufactured shelters are in place.
Considering the resources available, why are there still barriers to individual preparedness? The results of a recent survey performed by the Persuadable Research Corporation indicate that more than half of respondents believe they are unprepared for a disaster. According to the survey, personal experience appears to be the driving factor behind preparedness, and inaction seems to stem from the perceived financial impacts of preparedness.
While it’s difficult to put a price tag on the intangibles (health, safety, ability to return to work, etc.), is it really prudent to wait to be affected before taking action? More than just a literal blueprint for action, FEMA 320 has several answers to the perceived financial problem; on pages 41-42 there is an anecdote. describing the experience of an Autauga County, Alabama resident with the process of constructing a safe room. The first step taken in the process was to contact the local emergency manager and enroll in the Alabama Safe Room program. By completing the application for Individuals through Alabama Emergency Management Agency’s Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, the individual received 75% of the cost to construct the safe room.
An important reminder regarding high-wind events such as hurricanes and tornadoes – even though a shelter or safe room may be designed in conformance with all applicable FEMA criteria, the use of these structures may not be in compliance with mandatory evacuation orders of the local jurisdiction. Local jurisdictional directions and orders should always take precedence.
A strong strategy for recovery involves personal preparedness. This preparedness requires an informed, rather than perceived, understanding of the hazards and impacts. Luck is not a strategic plan! Individuals and businesses should not rely on immediate assistance and response from local, state, or the federal government in a major regional disaster. Firestorm’s Disaster Ready People for a Disaster Ready America takes individuals and employees though a process that helps them create their plan at home, ensuring a more rapid return to work and the ability to restore a sense of “normalcy”.
Can we motivate you to put on your own helmet? What do helmets and tornadoes have in common? Join our webinar, hosted by Firestorm in March to find out more.
Impactful disasters often provoke an emotional and sometimes knee-jerk reaction – hindsight opens the door for a multitude of discussions about what could have been done to enhance preparedness and what should be done to mitigate future risk.
The immediate urgency created in a disaster’s aftermath is immense and far-reaching. Driving this urgency is often (understandably), a personal sense of regret that as individuals, there was a failure to undertake the necessary actions to mitigate the impacts of the disaster, inasmuch as those actions were reasonable, e.g. “if we had better storm shelters…”, “if only we had enough fresh supplies…”, etc.
Alabama’s Manufactured Housing Commission (“MHC”) and other entities have become entangled over the appropriate jurisdiction, bidding, construction, inspection, sale, etc. of effective tornado shelters.
However, it is important to note that the intervention of lawmakers and Alabama’s Emergency Management Agency (“EMA”) is trying to remove barriers to installation of smaller, private shelters holding 12 or fewer people. This action may indicate that there may be smaller obstacles to be faced for smaller, private shelters.
It is anticipated that there is nothing preventing individuals, businesses, or cities from taking the initiative to protect themselves, rather than depending on the county or other state agencies for that protection. Therein lies a huge opportunity for action on a personal level.
In rural or isolated areas across the United States, personal preparedness for individuals and families is encouraged with slogans like “The First 72 are on You”, designed to deter reliance on public agencies in the first few days and increase the likelihood of a return to a “new normal” after an event. That message is not limited to rural residential areas – it is applicable to every individual, family and business vulnerable to a natural or man-made disaster.
While focused on the application of “manufactured” shelters, the article does not discuss the ability to design and build “brick and mortar” or traditionally constructed shelters. Next week we’ll look at the possibility and implications of building a shelter under current building code and agency requirements, rather than waiting for the red tape to be cut.
Firestorm’s firm belief that Every Crisis is a Human Crisis begins with disaster preparedness at home. Individual and family preparedness and resiliency, allows individuals – as business employees – the peace of mind that their families are cared for as their focus turns outward to assisting their businesses recover. We have found that across most companies, 95% of employees do not have a plan at home. If employees do not have a clear strategy for their families, emergencies or disasters can force a choice between family and work, and family will always trump work.
Reliance on immediate assistance and response from local government in a disaster should not be the only strategy for recovery. Firestorm’s Disaster Ready People for a Disaster Ready America takes individuals and employees through a process that helps them create their plan at home, ensuring a more rapid return to work and the ability to restore a sense of “normalcy”.
As we reflect upon the two year anniversary of the devastating M7.0 earthquake in Haiti, and approach the bicentennial of the 1811-1812 New Madrid earthquake sequence, many parallels may be drawn. Looking at these two events, there are numerous similarities that can inform the preparedness efforts we can effect now, in the United States, to keep buildings safe and businesses operational when the next significant event occurs in the New Madrid Seismic Zone.
One of the most striking similarities is the historical context of the timeframes and generational memories of the inhabitants within the regions. Prior to the Haiti earthquake of 2010 just over two hundred years had elapsed since a previous similarly devastating event had occurred. Further, like the New Madrid region, the expected frequency of large earthquakes is measured in centuries rather than decades.
Absence of Historic Context
As our conversations with residents of Port-au-Prince found, this long time period allowed generations to come and go without passing along prominent memories or personal stories of past experiences to influence the present or future mindset of the current populations.
This absence of context for potential earthquakes creates a lack of awareness and therefore, a false sense of security and certainly a lack of urgency for those living within the potentially affected areas.
When asked where significant earthquakes occur in the United States, most of the population will quickly identify the states of California, Alaska, and possibly Hawaii. Some individuals may even include Oregon and Washington, but few individuals will identify the Central United States as a region that could be affected and in fact has felt the effects of a major earthquake. An example of this lack of awareness and urgency can be measured by the participation in preparedness drills; last year’s Great Central U.S. Shakeout drew an approximate 3 million participants or under 5% of the populations of the eight states most likely to be affected by an event within the New Madrid Fault zone, by comparison last year’s Great California Shakeout drew over 8.5 million participants, approximately 25% of the state’s population.
Lessons from Haiti
So what should the remaining 95% of the New Madrid region’s residents learn from Haiti, and why should they care?
On January 12, 2010, the Republic of Haiti was struck by a M7.0 earthquake. According to USGS, during the 20th century and prior to this event, seismic activity within the island of Hispaniola had been concentrated on the eastern 2/3 of the island in the Dominican Republic, with only one earthquake in the Port-au-Prince region since 1964 registering greater than M4.0. Historically, though, larger (>M7.0) earthquakes have affected the region in 1701, 1751, 1770, and 1860 due largely to movement of the east-west-oriented Enriquillo Fault located just south of Port-au-Prince.
From December 1811 to February 1812, a series of three earthquakes with a magnitude of 7.0 or greater rocked New Madrid Seismic Zone. According to USGS, the main shocks were followed by many hundreds of aftershocks that lasted for decades. Many of the aftershocks were major earthquakes themselves. The area that was strongly shaken by the three main shocks was 2–3 times as large as the area shaken by the 1964 M9.2 Alaskan earthquake, and 10 times as large as that of the 1906 M7.8 San Francisco earthquake.
New Madrid Seismic Zone
It is estimated that the ground motion for a possible major earthquake event in the New Madrid Seismic Zone could be higher than associated with a major California Earthquake. In fact, according to USGS data, the anticipated ground motion which can result from an earthquake event triggered within the New Madrid Seismic Zone could be up to 17% greater than the anticipated ground motions in Los Angeles and up to 92% greater than anticipated ground motions in San Francisco for comparably significant earthquake events in those areas. But what is the likelihood of such an event happening? USGS reports indicate the chance of having a magnitude 6.7 or larger earthquake over the next 30 years is greater than 65% for Los Angeles and the chance of having a 6.0 or greater magnitude earthquake in the next 50 years within the New Madrid Zone is between 25 to 40 percent. And while a M6.0 earthquake in Memphis is smaller than the 6.7 considered for Los Angeles, it must be remembered that the capacity to resist such earthquakes is significantly less due to far less stringent building practices in the New Madrid region.
Haiti’s devastating earthquake highlights what could happen in Middle America near the vicinity of New Madrid, Missouri. Over 70% of the building inventory in Port-au-Prince collapsed, was significantly damaged or was deemed unusable for a considerable time. The majority of the affected buildings were unreinforced masonry buildings with and without nominally reinforced concrete frames. Middle America has a similarly high number of unreinforced masonry buildings which, while of slightly different vintage or construction practice, have equally low capacity to resist significant ground shaking. Pictures of downtown Port-au-Prince give vivid examples of what could happen to downtown Main Streets across the New Madrid region.
The Haiti earthquake also provides a view of the impact to society beyond the damage. The collapse of a significant number of schools in Haiti has placed a huge burden on the next generation. So many schools failed in the Port-au-Prince region that the national government suspended the school year for approximately 3 months nationwide, and while many schools outside of the immediate Port-au-Prince region are back to teaching, a significant number of students are still without classrooms in Haiti. As another example, in Chile, the extent of major damage to schools following its M9.0 earthquake three months after Haiti was less impactful; however, the loss of operations due to interior damage and disruption of contents still resulted in closed school buildings for months after the event. The disruption of their education will likely impact this generation of students well beyond the immediate recovery and rebuilding of these two nations.
Business Disruption Risks
Disruption or continuity of business can be just as critical to the recovery of a devastated region as is ability to protect and care for the injured. In Haiti, the garment industry is a major contributor to the national economy. It was imperative that the manufacturers were able to ensure their clients that the production of apparel was operational within days after the earthquake. Had a lengthy down-time ensued, clients likely would have shifted contracts to other providers in different nations, resulting in a critical loss to Haiti’s economic ability to respond and rebuild. It is reported that the massive damage to the port facilities in Kobe, Japan (1995 6.8M) caused much of that port’s shipping commerce to move elsewhere. One of the world’s busiest ports prior to the earthquake, Kobe has yet to regain its former status as Japan’s principal shipping port.
Firestorm and MHP, Inc. Structural Engineers continue to support our clients throughout the United States with preparedness planning and disaster response by participating in post-earthquake reconnaissance in Haiti, maintaining an extensive portfolio of seismic and risk assessment and mitigation experience, and developing continuity plans with clients to ensure better response before, during, and after a disruption or disaster. Preparations are underway for this year’s Great Central U.S. Shakeout (scheduled for February 7, 2012, at 10:15 a.m. CST, http://www.shakeout.org/centralus/). Regardless of your location, we encourage you to look to the Great Central U.S. Shakeout as a great opportunity to test your preparedness. More information on topics like this is forthcoming in our structurally-focused preparedness webinar series for 2012.
HEADLINE: Fire devastates Cerritos strip mall
SUMMARY: About $5.5 million in damage was done to a Cerritos shopping center early Sunday after firefighters were too late to save the building, Los Angeles County Fire Capt. Mark Savage said. “It started collapsing when we were here so we had to pull out,” he said. Firefighters were called to the blaze at the Fountain Plaza Mall at South Street and Gridley Road about 2 a.m.
ANALYSIS: How much do you know about the other tenants in your building?
Unless you own and occupy the entire facility your business is housed in, you are vulnerable not only to natural and man-made disasters, terrorism, and communicable illness / pandemic exposures, but also to the side effects of those same hazards as they happen to other tenants and businesses located around and adjacent to your business.
In this unfortunate case, the flames from the restaurant fire quickly spread through the remainder of the building to engulf 10 businesses on the top floor.
- Who knew about this incident, and finally notified the fire department?
- Was it someone from the restaurant, or a concerned passer-by?
- Did the restaurant’s plan include some sort of automatic notification system alerting the incident response team when the internal fire suppression system became engaged?
- Did the restaurant have an emergency response plan?
These questions lead easily into other questions that we may ask ourselves – do you know your property management’s emergency notification process and incident management plan? What is the building or property management’s business continuity plan for your facility? Does your property management require tenants to have and maintain business continuity plans?
Even the best laid plans may prove useless if your business plans do not coordinate, even slightly, with the other plans in place by building or property management for the site you occupy.
Other threats to your business may arise from tenants near or in your building that may invite terrorism or other threats, such as an FBI or other government branch, a foreign nation’s consul, etc.
What i s your plan for dealing with events that may affect those businesses?
Firestorm’s business continuity protection begins with a proprietary Benchmark/Gap Analysis of an organization’s existing plans, processes and procedures. Our comprehensive Benchmark/Gap Analysis service focuses on operations, emergency response, employees, organization, systems, facilities, communication, and risks – internal and external – that an organization faces.
Using this analysis, businesses and organizations are able to further understand the risks to the organization, and develop plans that can address or mitigate the risks. Understanding the depths of exposure your organization has, can ensure performance goals and objectives are achieved.
As this unfortunate instance shows, business may not have control over the timing of events affecting the organization when you share tenancy with other business owners. However, it is best to start planning a risk mitigation process with a full understanding of the risks entailed before the lack of adequate planning results in a future disruption becoming a real disaster.
Ken O’Dell, Marisol Shankar, and MHP are Firestorm partners and frequent contributors to the Firestorm Disaster Due Diligence Newsletter. To read the current newsletter in its entirety, view archives of previous Newsletters, or to sign up to receive updates, visit Firestorm Disaster Due Diligence.
Next Thursday is The Great California ShakeOut…
It is not often that we know when the BIG ONE will hit… but Thursday, October 20, 2011 at 10:20am, California is going to be ROCKED!
MHP is, of course, a participant and at our offices, we will be conducting a small test exercise. We encourage you and all our valued clients to do the same, or at the very least, practice protecting yourself during earthquake shaking using Drop! Cover! Hold on! Register yourself or your firm here: http://www.shakeout.org/register/
Be counted in the largest earthquake drill ever, and be the example that motivates others to participate and get prepared!
HEADLINE: September 29, WTTG 5 District of Columbia – (District of Columbia) Engineers find ‘expected ’ damage at monument.
SUMMARY: The team inspecting earthquake damage at the Washington Monument in Washington D.C. is finding ‘expected’ problems with the exterior stones which support the structure. A National Park Service (NPS) spokesman said the agency believes the monument remains structurally sound. “They have identified areas of interest that need further examination.” The monument grounds are closed to tourists.
ANALYSIS: Having been to the top of the Washington Monument on numerous occasions while living on the East Coast, it is with considerable interest that I have watched the stories develop regarding the Virginia Earthquake and, in particular, the inspection of the Monument. My interest is heightened by the fact that I’m a practicing structural engineer in Southern California with ties remaining in the DC area, including my Virginia Professional Engineer’s license. Interestingly enough, early in my career, I had the opportunity to conduct a seismic risk study for another of the large buildings bordering the National Mall. With that understanding comes an awareness that the earthquake which occurred was not outside the realm of possibility or expectation. With the adoption of recent codes such as the International Building Code (IBC) on a more consistent national basis, the potential for, and effects of, earthquake generated ground shaking are becoming better understood and more specifically addressed in areas of our nation outside the “familiar earthquake region” of the West Coast.
When dedicated in 1885, the Washington Monument was the tallest building structure in the world. Although its “tallest structure reign” was cut short by the Eiffel Tower a mere three years later, at just over 555 feet tall the Washington Monument remains the tallest, free standing, unreinforced masonry or stone structure in the world. This means that the structure relies on the bond of the stone units and the mortar between them to maintain integrity. With over 125 years of service, the mortar joints appear to have passed the load test. Of course, with any structure, materials age and points of localized stress develop. Perhaps this begins to explain some of the reasons behind the observed cracks in the stone and loss of mortar beds. It should be noted that this is not unusual or necessarily unexpected. As the article points out, the damage so far observed is ‘expected’. Given the amount of ground shaking and the type of construction, it can be suggested that the Monument performed very well. So, what comes next?
Fortunately, experience with restoration of the Monument is not too far in the distant past. As recently as 1999, a renovation project completely enclosed the Monument in a scaffold so that cleaning of the stone and re-pointing of the mortar joints could be undertaken. Re-pointing is a method whereby old mortar is removed and new material is placed to re-bond joints that may have deteriorated over time or through excessive loading. As with previous renovation projects, some of the actual stone blocks will likely require replacement as well. Considering that masonry and stone buildings have been undergoing renovation for centuries (think of the historic buildings throughout the world), there is a considerable amount of experience to draw from. The process will not be overly complex, but it will be very detailed. With adequate time, energy and a bit of money, the Monument should be back to sharing the views of Washington “soon”.
Ken O’Dell and MHP are Firestorm partners and frequent contributors to the Firestorm Disaster Due Diligence Newsletter. To read the current newsletter in its entirety, view archives of previous Newsletters, or to sign up to receive updates, visit Firestorm Disaster Due Diligence.
Several months ago MHP joined with the USS IOWA Organizers to help bring the WWII Battleship to San Pedro as a permanent museum and monument. Nearly three football fields long and more than 14 stories high, the Iowa is one of the biggest warships ever built. On its last trip to San Francisco, sailors had to trim its mast by 13 feet to fit under the Golden Gate Bridge. For the new location in San Pedro, MHP has designed the quay towers and gangways for the public to access the ship, and will be the structural engineer of record for other current and future site improvements.
According to an article in the June 22, 2011 edition of the Los Angeles Times, an earthquake such as the M7.8 scenario used during the Great California ShakeOut (a yearly exercise held statewide organized by the Earthquake County Alliance) will likely have a devastating effect on businesses and the economy.
In 2008, the United States Geological Survey indicated that the probability of a M6.7 or greater earthquake affecting the Los Angeles and Southern California regions was 67% and 97%, respectively. This earthquake magnitude was actually experienced during the 1994 Northridge earthquake. Effectively, the question becomes when will the earthquake occur, not if more…
Long Beach Heritage’s Annual Loft Walk takes place at the International Tower this year, on Saturday, March 12, 2011. It’s a great opportunity to learn about the history of the building and meet the homeowners in a casual party-like atmosphere. Ken O’Dell, MHP Structural Engineer, will be on site providing a short presentation on the structural aspects of this building.
As an on-going outreach to our clients, MHP has recently launched a lunch series, Lunch and Learn, on various topics, including Seismic Risk, Business Continuity, Structural Engineering Basics for Architects and more. If you are interested in a refresher course, introductory course or more, please contact us at email@example.com to discuss Lunch and Learn opportunities for your team.
Join MHP on October 21 at the Great California ShakeOut! The Great California ShakeOut is the largest earthquake drill ever, organized to educate the public about emergency management during a large earthquake.
The preparations we make now, before a big earthquake, will determine what our lives will be like, and how our businesses will continue to operate, after the earthquake. Make a difference at your business by registering to be a part of the ShakeOut here!
MHP offers Business Continuity Planning services, which will significantly increase your ability to respond and recover quickly after a disaster. We work with businesses in determining risk factors including building configuration, structural systems and age of construction. We also identify site hazards such as proximity to active seismic faults, liquefiable soils, landslide potential, tsunami run-up potential; and site security measures such as stand-off distance, vulnerability of structural and non-structural elements, and access to or security of infrastructure. To find out more about MHP’s Business Continuity Planning (BCP) services, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MHP Structural Engineers, Long Beach, competes in the 3rd annual OC Canstruction contest this Friday, September 3rd. MHP’s structure is located on the 3rd Floor on the Bear side of South Coast Plaza in front of the Calvin Klein store. Over 1,000 cans will be used to build our structure and then donated to the OC Food Bank. Make sure to check it out from September 4-26!
MHP joined forces today with The New City Farm on BUILD DAY! The 1/3 acre New City Farm is a sustainable learning experience for students and the downtown Long Beach community. The farm is powered by Solar Flora, a 15′ flower sculpture with solar panels that is as beautiful as it is powerful. MHP designed the foundation system for the Solar Flora!
Friday March 5, MHP’s principals Kenneth O’Dell, S.E. and Lance Kenyon, S.E. will head to Port-au-Prince to assist the Haiti Government. They will conduct rapid reviews to determine the viability of current occupancy and assess short term strengthening concepts to help restore standards for continued occupancy, with the immediate goal of gaining confidence in the structures to allow resumption of business and sheltering functions for the City.
Last week, Ken O’Dell addressed the Cal Poly San Luis Obispo chapter of SEAOC about a variety of topics, including leadership in a company, what makes a leader and how to become a leader, the A/E/C industry, and general life lessons. The presentation was part of the Winter Meeting.
MHP sends our condolences to the Haitian citizens during this sorrowful event. As structural engineers working daily to protect lives against such tragedies, we are especially cognizant of the seismic risk in many areas throughout the world. While we are fortunate in the United States to have more stringent building codes, there is still much to be done to strengthen our existing buildings and protect the structures, businesses, and particularly the lives of those relying on these buildings for their safety. MHP has made a contribution to support the relief efforts in Haiti and we encourage you to do the same.
MHP’s most recent Target project, located in Sunnyvale, California, has recently opened their doors for business. Congratulations to MBH Architects for their vision! Click here for photos.
MHP Structural Engineers congratulates long time client and partner Caruana & Associates as they unveil their new corporate identity. Caruana & Associates is now c|a ARCHITECTS. Check out their newly designed website!
As the “green” building and design industry picks up pace, MHP continues to do everything we can to support the Architects and MEP consultants who are on the fore front of providing clients with environmentally friendly designs. MHP is proud to announce partner Terry Fernandez, S.E. and project engineer Jong-Kook Hong, P.E. as the first two LEED AP® accredited structural engineers at MHP. Congratulations!
MHP Structural Engineers partners, Rick Beall and Brad Ferris, project engineers, Serena Liu, Kathy Rantovich and Samir Abudayyeh and design engineer Shawn Alvira participated in the 11th annual PCRF 5K on May 3 to help raise over $150,000 for research on children’s cancer. Congratulations on a well-run event!
MHP Structural Engineers’ Principal and Partner, Lance Kenyon, S.E. and senior project engineer Kathy Rantowich, S.E. worked with California State University Northridge (CSUN) and P2S Engineering on a 13,000 square foot, 1 megawatt fuel cell powerplant at CSUN, which is the largest fuel cell power plant at any university in the world.
The power plant provides environmentally friendly power to the campus, providing almost 20% of the campus’ power needs. The fuel cell plant will reduce the university’s CO2 emissions by 60 million pounds during ts lifetime.
MHP provided the structural engineering for the foundations and anchorage of the fuel cell power plant. The fuel cell power plant is scheduled to be finished at the end of June 2009.
Jesse Karns, P.E. S.E., Vice President and Partner at MHP Structural Engineers instructed several structural engineers on progressive collapse mitigation as part of ASCE continuing education programs in Orlando, Florida. Mr. Karns will be presenting again at ASCE’s Boston Conference in April 2009.
Since as early as 1994, MHP Structural Engineers has specialized in the design of blast-resistant buildings and specialty structures, and has become nationally recognized, by both Blast Engineers and Structural Engineers, for the unique role it provides in bridging their respective needs. The 9-11 attack on the World Trade Center has significantly impacted and increased the need for national antiterrorism building design guidelines and standards. Mr. Karns, as a blast mitigation researcher, innovator and leader in helping to shape and enhance national Antiterrorism/Force Protection design standards, is playing an integral role in educating structural engineers how to design buildings that are responsive to the security needs of blast engineers, using practical examples and proven cost-effective solutions from actual projects.
Mr. Karns has participated in several research programs and has written many publications, including co-authorship of the GSA’s new June 2003 Section 5 – Progressive Collapse Guidelines for Steel Frame Buildings.
Kenneth O’Dell, S.E., Vice President and partner at MHP Structural Engineers, was recently invited by the Business Continuity Managers Association of the Philippines (BCMAP) as an expert guest speaker on the topic of seismic risk, reducing the risks, and the steps to take to prepare for when your organization is affected by an earthquake. Mr. O’Dell presented his “Considerations for Business Continuity in Seismically Active Regions” discussion on February 12, 2008 for BCMAP at the headquarters of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) in Manila, Philippines.
He was honored to share the podium with Dr. Renato U. Solidum, Jr., Director of the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology and Mr. Wilson Sy, VP, Aromin & Sy Structural Engineers, Makati, Philippines.
MHP assisted CSULB by completing detailed seismic evaluations of four existing buildings at the Brooks College campus in Long Beach, CA. CSULB subsequently acquired the property for conversion to dormitories for their students. The original buildings were constructed in the 1960’s, and include three, three-story reinforced concrete classroom/residential buildings, and a two-story pre-cast concrete cafeteria building. MHP completed seismic strengthening designs for three of the four buildings, and construction commenced January 1, 2009. The fourth building is currently being demolished to provide additional parking. The seismic strengthening design involved detailed linear dynamic and nonlinear procedures outlined in ASCE 41-06, and met the dual criteria of Life Safety performance level for a 225 year return period earthquake, and Collapse Prevention performance level for a stronger 950 year return period earthquake. The renovated, strengthened facility is expected to be open for the Fall Quarter 2009.
MHP completed the structural design for the new Buena Park Police Station. The building design is approximately 60,000 square feet and consists of a two-story structure with public, administrative, crime lab, Emergency Operations Center, and holding cell functions. The design utilizes tilt-up concrete bearing and shear walls with concrete filled metal decks supported by structural steel beams and columns. Construction is currently underway with an expected completion date in mid-late 2009. Click here for live job site cameras.
MHP, Inc. congratulates Jennifer R. Hiatt, Daniel Fox and Jong-Kook Hong, who recently passed the professional engineer exam. Hiatt and Fox joined MHP in 2006, and Hong joined MHP in 2007; they have all been successfully serving our clients’ needs since then. Join us in congratulating them on earning their Professional Engineer licenses!
MHP, as their contribution to University by the Sea, donated their design services to transform 3 interconnected abandoned shipping containers into a temporary art museum named the Goods Gallery.
While the event took place on October 5, 2008, the Goods Gallery is still getting weekend use to display the work of local artists. See www.GoodsGalleryLB.com for more information about upcoming events.
MHP Structural Engineers is proud to congratulate two of their design engineers who were notified that they had earned their P.E. licenses passing with flying colors a test they took in the spring. Design Engineers, Matt Wexler and Brian Wilson are now P.E.s. With a staff of 45, MHP now has 28 engineers, of which 13 hold an S.E. license and 9 hold a P.E. license, supported by a staff of 8 CAD drafters.
Partner Kenneth D. O’Dell, S.E. has also earned licenses in both Hawaii and Texas. MHP has engineers licensed in 17 states including AZ, CA, GA, HI, ID, KY, MI, MO, MT, NV OH, OR, PA, TX, UT, WA, and WV.
MHP was recently named California State University, Los Angeles’ (CSULA) Campus Engineer for the 2008-2009 Fiscal Year. As Campus Engineer, MHP will be responsible for providing structural engineering support for the vast majority of construction projects at the University, outside of large Capital Projects. CSULA is a great addition to the firm’s rapport with California Universities. MHP has been the campus Engineer for California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) and JPL for over eight years and has completed numerous projects of varying size and complexity for each entity.
In addition to being campus engineer for CSULA, CSULB AND JPL, MHP is proud of the working relationships developed over the past 35 years with several Southern California colleges including East Los Angeles College, Long Beach City College, University of Southern California, University of California, Los Angeles, Pepperdine University, Orange Coast College, Vanguard University, Santiago Community College, Irvine Valley College, Mt. San Antonio, Brooks College, , West Los Angeles College, , Pomona College, Cerritos College and Loma Linda University.
*Due to confidentiality, client names have been omitted.
MHP is in the final stages of its fifth major seismic risk evaluation project for a Southern California Unified School District. MHP was awarded the contract in June 2008, with site visits occurring through July and August to observe over 300 elementary, middle, high school, and administrative facilities. The screening level of review is intended to identify high risk buildings, particularly those buildings that may pose a life-safety risk to occupants. MHP’s recommendations will address the seismic safety concerns and present retrofitting options and approximate construction costs. MHP engineers welcome inquiries from Unified School Districts on how they can keep their structures, students, and staff safe.
The seismic risk division may be contacted by emailing email@example.com
MHP will host the upcoming SEAOSC Younger Members bimonthly meeting here in Long Beach on Saturday, July 12, 2008. Jennifer Hiatt and Dan Fox, two engineers from our firm, will give a presentation on the Fundamentals of Foundation Design. Lunch will be provided. For more information on attending this event please visit http://www.projectpartners.com/ps/ps_show_event.asp?id=2118&socid=84.
On Your Mark…Get Set…Go!
MHP engineers and support staff teamed up Sunday, May 4, 2008 to put their best foot forward at the 10th Annual Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation’s “Reaching for the Cure”. The cloudy skies in Irvine, CA didn’t damper the spirits of the 10 person team claiming to be known as Moderately High Performance. The 10 runners, who worked up a sweat in both the 10k and 5k races, even took time out post-run to enjoy several booths offering tasty treats and deep-tissue massages. Racers enjoyed complimentary water throughout the course courtesy of MHP’s water station sponsorship. Lance Kenyon, of the Seismic Risk Division, was happy to report no major injuries, just a few sore muscles.
For more information on this outstanding charity, please visit www.pcrf-kids.com
Top Row: Serena Liu, Samir Abudayyeh, Brad Ferris, Jen Hiatt, Rick Beall, Tammi Owens
Bottom Row: Kathy Rantowich, Lance Kenyon, Laura La Mothe
MHP engineer, Gabriel Acero, P.E., will be speaking at the Structural Engineers Association of Southern California (SEAOSC) Macro seminar on Saturday October 27, 2007 at the Grand Event Center in Long Beach. The seminar will review fundamental gravity and seismic loads paths in buildings, as well as discuss related detailing issues, showing comparisons between the 1997 UBC and the 2006 IBC/2007 CBC. Gabriel will be focusing on:
• Diaphragm Loading Criteria
• Effects of Interaction with Other Structural Components (P-Delta Effects, Irregularities, etc)
• Force Evaluation at Diaphragm Components (Diaphragm, Chords, Collectors)
• Deformation of Diaphragms.
The Load Path & Secrets of Detailing Macro Seminar will be held at The Grand Event Center located at 4101 Willow Street in Long Beach, California. Learn more about the seminar at www.seaosc.org.
The Partners at MHP are proud to announce the promotion of Brad E. Ferris, S.E. to Partner. Brad’s responsibilities will include project management, production oversight, and quality control within the Seismic Risk division. He will continue to perform structural evaluations, complete seismic rehabilitations, and prepare detailed Probable Maximum Loss (PML) reports. As a new Partner, Brad will take on an integral role in decision making and corporate planning.
Chosen for his expansive field expertise and competence which he has demonstrated for over 13 years at MHP; there is confidence in Brad’s abilities. “Brad is great working with the clients, whether clearly explaining seismic risks, or putting in the extra effort to meet their needs,” explains Partner Lance Kenyon. “Brad has excellent judgment, and a thorough understanding of structural engineering and building behavior under strong ground motion.”
Ferris joined MHP in 1994 and has been instrumental in the growth of the Seismic Risk division where, as a Senior Project Manager, he has completed thousands of structural building evaluations and PML assessments for buildings of all types and sizes. He graduated Cum Laude from California State University, Long Beach with a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering with Structural Emphasis in 1993. A licensed Structural Engineer in California, he is a member of the Structural Engineers Association of California (SEAOSC) and Chi Epsilon civil engineering honor society. He is a resident of Huntington Beach.
The Partners and employees at MHP are thrilled to re-introduce www.mhpse.com to valued clients, professionals, colleagues, and students in the structural engineering field. The completion of this long overdue makeover marks another milestone in MHP history. Designed to offer an in-depth look into the people and projects surrounding MHP, it is exciting to finally have the website up and running!
The re-designed corporate logo was created to represent the substantial growth that has taken place in the company over the past 35 years. This development has prompted a name change from Myers, Houghton & Partners to simply MHP, aimed at recognizing each contributing partner as a whole. This recognition provides direction for the future, pressing on with the passion and priority of offering the same quality service to our past, present, and future clients.