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U.C. Berkeley Study: 11 Century City Buildings On Earthquake Risk List

Century City skyline
11 Century City buildings could be at-risk in a significant earthquake, a U.C. Berkeley study reportedly found. (Thinkstock)

A list of more than 1,400 buildings possibly at risk in an earthquake was released in late January by U.C. Berkeley researchers. In a separate analysis of the list conducted by the Los Angeles Times, it was found 11 buildings in Century City were among those found to be at risk in the Berkeley study.

The study, which took about three years to compile, took inventory of structures built before 1976, when stricter codes were enacted in the City.

Researchers pointed out the study provided a broad brushstroke of buildings, many of them concrete, that could be at risk in a major earthquake.

“The study did not determine whether any specific building represents a greater collapse hazard than other buildings,” the study stated. Such determination would require a detailed site investigation and structural analysis by an engineer. No interior inspections of any specific buildings were conducted for the study, and no structural analysis was done. The exact configuration of the lateral force-resisting systems for individual buildings was not reviewed.”

Even more, researchers stated the study, which only includes data through 2011, likely contains some errors and omissions, is not “definitive,” and does not intend to identify buildings in the City as dangerous.

An in-depth look at the study by the Los Angeles Times revealed several buildings on the Westside were included in the Berkeley study.

Of the 11 buildings identified in an interactive map posted on the Los Angeles Times website, at least one might be upgraded as early as this year.

Century City Hospital at 2070 Century Park East was identified as a potentially hazardous building. Built in 1968, the hospital will be reopening soon as a rehabilitation facility operated by UCLA Medical Center and Cedars-Sinai. It is anticipated both organizations would be bringing the building up to current code prior to the reopening.

Another notable building on the list: Bloomingdales at Westfield Century City.

Also on the list was an office building at 1800 Avenue of the Stars. The Los Angeles Times’ interactive map stated the 12-story, 305,000 square-foot building is valued at $68.4 millions and currently does not have any daytime or nighttime occupants.

Researchers identified two parking structures on Century Park East – including one at 1888 and another at 1950 – as well. The structure at 1950 Century Park East was built in 1963 while the other at 1888 was erected in 1970.

Another parking structure adjacent to the Robinsons-May facility and the Beverly Hilton also made the list.

Rounding out the list was a recreational facility at 1950 Century Park East, an office building at 10203 Santa Monica Boulevard, and three buildings built in 1928 at the 20th Century Fox Studios lot at Pico Boulevard and Avenue of the Stars.

In all, a total of 1,451 buildings were identified in the Berkeley study as one that could potential collapse during a significant earthquake and expose hundreds of lives to injury or death.

Still, as the researchers indicated, the study’s results are inconclusive and more analysis would have to be done to determine the specific threats a significant earthquake would pose to each pre-1976 building.

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