This natural episode that you may witness on your window, on your doors, in the bathroom or in the kitchen occurs when water vapour in the air condenses and the drops become visible (and palpable), wetting walls and carpentry frames.
The decision to purchase a home in Spain is never easy to take. Even now that the market has started to recover there are questions and doubts that potential buyers and visitors to the Sima, Madrid International Real Estate Exhibition have expressed. Sima took place from the 5th to the 8th of May.
When you are doctor, friends normally point to their back alleging throbbing pains and requesting an immediate diagnosis. However when you are an Architect, your friends normally show you their cracks. Please don't get me wrong!! I am talking about those cracks that they have on partition walls, facades etc and pitifully beg for a compassionate verdict.
Following my last articles on Lorca’s earthquake, perhaps it could be a good idea to examine some typical building failures, with the purpose of differentiating idiosyncrasies between Spanish and British construction techniques. Let us take for instance exterior walls. Normally exterior walls in the UK are load bearing walls while here in Spain with the exception of old buildings, recent construction particularly around the Costas, have a reinforced concrete structure and their external walls...
There are two major daunting thoughts that preoccupy most architects. First, that a building you have designed collapsed and kill or injure one or more people. Second, a building worker die o is seriously injured on one of your building sites. According to the Spanish Workers' Union, construction left 177 dead by accident throughout Spain in 2009.
I am afraid that under the current circumstances it may not be ethically correct to ask that question right now, but I am sure that more than one reader had wondered about the stability of their homes before an earthquake. Although it is a highly technical matter, I believe that we can converse about the subject circumscribing to general information, so that at the end of the following expositions some of us (including me, I had to carry out some research on the subject and dust up the old text...
The “Norma de Construcción Sismorresistente: Parte General y Edificación (Ncsr-02)” Spanish Earthquake-Resistant Norm classifies buildings in accordance with their intended use and with the damage their destruction can cause, they are classified as: Buildings moderately important. Buildings with a negligible probability that their destruction during an earthquake may cause any casualties, disrupt a primary service, or cause significant economic damage. For example warehouses or...
One of the many questions we architects ask ourselves when designing a building, concerns the reactions that will take place on a structure if an earthquake should take place. The objective is that the structure should withstand an earthquake with a low or moderate intensity, limiting the damage to non-structural elements and, although it may present significant damage during earthquakes of a severe intensity the building will not collapse.
I finished my last article for CBN on earthquakes on the second week of April and less than one month later on May the 11th it happened. Two earth quakes occurred on the monumental city of Lorca. The first with a magnitude of 4.4 on the Richter scale, it took place at about 17:05, and the second at 18.47 hour with a magnitude of 5.1 of the same scale. Nine people lost their lives. Now we must ask ourselves: What went wrong?
Foundation problems Last week we were looking at the different foundation problems due to bad design and we explained how important it was to determine the causes swiftly and proposing rapidly a solution which could range from acting on the structure itself, making changes on the geotechnical properties of the soil by treating, improving and/or reinforcing the soil, via the common solution of underpinning the existing foundation, etc.
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