Articles | Volume 4, issue 4
18 Aug 2004
18 Aug 2004

Multi-criteria decision model for retrofitting existing buildings

M. D. Bostenaru Dan

Abstract. Decision is an element in the risk management process. In this paper the way how science can help in decision making and implementation for retrofitting buildings in earthquake prone urban areas is investigated. In such interventions actors from various spheres are involved. Their interests range among minimising the intervention for maximal preservation or increasing it for seismic safety. Research was conducted to see how to facilitate collaboration between these actors. A particular attention was given to the role of time in actors' preferences. For this reason, on decision level, both the processural and the personal dimension of risk management, the later seen as a task, were considered. A systematic approach was employed to determine the functional structure of a participative decision model. Three layers on which actors implied in this multi-criteria decision problem interact were identified: town, building and element. So-called 'retrofit elements' are characteristic bearers in the architectural survey, engineering simulations, costs estimation and define the realms perceived by the inhabitants. This way they represent an interaction basis for the interest groups considered in a deeper study. Such orientation means for actors' interaction were designed on other levels of intervention as well. Finally, an 'experiment' for the implementation of the decision model is presented: a strategic plan for an urban intervention towards reduction of earthquake hazard impact through retrofitting. A systematic approach proves thus to be a very good communication basis among the participants in the seismic risk management process. Nevertheless, it can only be applied in later phases (decision, implementation, control) only, since it serves verifying and improving solution and not developing the concept. The 'retrofit elements' are a typical example of the detailing degree reached in the retrofit design plans in these phases.