San Francisco Soft Story Retrofitting Program in 3 Steps

Jax Kneppers Associates (JKA) - Soft Story ConsultationIf you received a notice in the mail that looked like the one below, you are in the right place – and JKA is ready to support you each step of the way.

  1. The initial screening process performing professional architectural/engineering services to determine your property Compliance Tier.
  2. Performing professional services to analyze the building and prepare construction drawings.
  3. Assist in selecting a qualified contractor to submit your plans.

Wood-Frame Seismic Retrofit Program Screening Form

Wood-Frame Seismic Retrofit Screening Form

Wood-Frame Seismic Retrofit Screening Form

The purpose of the Screening Form is to confirm which buildings are subject to San Francisco’s new Wood-Frame Seismic Retrofit Program and which buildings are exempt. If your building is exempt, the form will help you secure your exemption.

If you received a Screening Form with a letter from the Department of Building Inspection, you are required to complete and submit the form even if you believe your building is exempt from the program.

There is no fee to submit your Screening Form. However, in most cases, the form must be completed by a licensed design professional, who is allowed to negotiate a fee with you.

3 Easy Steps

JKA is committed to help you meet the requirements of San Francisco Building Code Chapter 34B: Mandatory Earthquake Retrofit of Wood-Frame Buildings as efficiently as possible.

Here’s how it works . . .

  • Step 1: Hire a licensed design professional (architect or engineer) to complete and submit a screening form by 9-15-2014. JKA can perform this service for a flat fee of $500. Please call us at (925) 817-1112 or (925) 933-3914 to set up an appointment with an engineer. Be prepared to answer the following questions:
      • Was your building built before 1978?
      • Is your building two stories with a basement or greater?
      • Does your building contain 5 or more dwelling units?
      • Is your building wood-frame (Type V) construction?
    • If you answer ‘no’ to any of the above questions, you are exempt from the program. Have your engineer submit the screening form (requires engineer’s seal) and you are done.
    • If you answer ‘yes’ to all of the above questions, please continue reading – you will be required to complete Steps 2 – 3:
  • Step 2: Retain your design professional’s services to analyze the building and prepare construction drawings. JKA can perform these services for a reasonable fee.
  • Step 3: Hire a licensed building contractor to submit your plans. JKA would be happy to help you select a qualified builder. Plans must be submitted for building permit according to the following schedule:
      • School, assembly or care facility (Tier I): 9-15-2015
      • 15 or more dwelling units (Tier II): 9-15-2016
      • Commercial building (Tier IV): 9-15-2018
      • All other buildings (Tier III): 9-15-2017
    • You will have two years to complete the work from this deadline.

A Safer San Francisco

When all is said and done, the City of San Francisco estimates each soft-story retrofit to cost from $60,000 to $130,000. Please note, however, that every project is different. JKA’s design fees are a percentage of this total cost and we take great care to provide not only structurally appropriate solutions, but cost-effective ones as well. Our goal is to make your building and the City of San Francisco a safer place to be.

Call: (925) 933-3914 or (925) 817-1112

Background Info

For the inquisitive, here is a list of some good background and supplemental information (Note: These links will open in new windows and are not part of  Don’t worry, they’re safe):

Jax Kneppers Associates (JKA) - Soft Story Consultation. Mandatory Seismic Retrofit Program for Soft Story Buildings. Professional Services for Compliance with Wood-Frame Retrofit Program

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