Structural Focus is proud to be a founding member of the US Resiliency Council (USRC). “The Council’s mission is to establish and implement meaningful rating systems that describe the performance of buildings during earthquakes and other natural hazard events, to educate the general public to understand these risks, and to thereby improve societal resilience.”

The USRC Earthquake Building Rating System launched this week to help rate building performance in earthquakes and other natural disasters. Structural Focus Principal, Wayne Chang, S.E., shared his over 17 years of experience working on structural projects throughout the Los Angeles area as a member of the committee designing the rating system.

The USRC rating system focuses on three performance categories, Safety, Damage (repair cost), and Recovery (time to regain basic function.) After review, one to five stars are assigned to each measure. This first-of-its-kind performance rating is based on decades of earthquake engineering research and observations of earthquake damage. Building owners, brokers, buyers, lenders, insurers, and tenants can all benefit from this system. Properties that receive high USRC ratings will benefit from an increase in perceived value, potentially increasing leasing rates and transaction efficiency—the same kind of benefits associated with LEED® accredited properties.

The USRC process is voluntary and includes two types of ratings. USRC Verified Rating is used by building owners for promotional, marketing, and publicity purposes. The USRC Transaction Rating is used for transactional due diligence that accommodates both the schedule and cost demands of the leasing, sales, finance and insurance markets for commercial real estate.

Download the USRC’s Rating Dimensions and Definitions here. For more information on the Council and its rating system services contact Structural Focus. Structural Focus Principal, Wayne Chang, S.E., has been certified as a USRC Reviewer and Structural Focus Associate, Samuel Mengelkoch, S.E., is a certified USRC Rater.