"Precast large-panel buildings are bearing-wall buildings constructed of precast-concrete members. There were sixteen of these buildings in Leninakan... "The large panel buildings had story-high segments of precast walls interconnected with cast-in-plac...

Prepared By: Sarah Bettinger
Occupancy: Residential
Year Built: 1970
Number of stories: 9
Stories below ground: unknown
Original Code: SNiP 62? Part 2, Chapter 1 of Standards and Regulations for Construction (1984)?
Modification: none
Year Modified:
Code of Modification:
Lateral Load System: Precast Concrete
Other Load System:
Vertical Load System: Bearing Walls
Other Vertical Load System:
Foundation : Other
Other Foundation :
Country: Armenia
State: N/A
City: Leninakan (now Gyumri)
Latitude: 40.796138
Longitude: 43.847755


PC Large Panel Building

Earthquake Information



Earthquake Date 32484
Moment Magnitude 6.9
Epicentral Distance 40
Local Intensity IX Other
Site Description Leninakan is located in a broad valley of poorly consolidated material. Aftershock recordings indicate significantly increased ground motion at Leninakan at longer periods than at other sites in the vicinity.
PGA Lateral 0.4 (g)
PGA Vertical None (g)
Ground motion recording stations Four (of eight) of the strong-motion instruments in Leninakan at the time of the quake produced usable data, as well as a strong-motion accelerograph in Ghoukasain (27km N. of Leninakan), a network of instruments in Yerevan (80km S. of the epicenter), and data from instruments at the nuclear power plant in Medzamor (80km S. of the epicenter).
Distance to station None
Station Latitude None
Station Longitude None
Ground Motion Summary The USGS (United States Geologic Survey) indicates that the focal depth of the quake was 10km, and that the quake occurred at the boundary of the Arabian and Eurasian plates.


Damage Information



Performance summary

There were sixteen of this type of building in Leninakan, each nine stories in height, that had no significant cracking. Except for lack of heat, the buildings were habitable and deemed safe after the earthquake, though residents had abandoned them in fear.

Damage state description

Fine cracking at some panel joints was observed.

Summary of causes of damage

1. In observed construction, joint is not completely full, and concrete is of uncertain strength, though its possible more work would be done before construction was completed.

Observed Design and Construction Characteristics


Construction Quality

MaterialsNotesContribution to Damage
Concrete "...concrete is of uncertain strength" (Wyllie, 1989).
Reinforcing steel

ExecutionNotesContribution to Damage
Conveyance/placement of concrete "The joint is not completely full [of concrete]..." (Wyllie, 1989).
Field variance with design documents "The quality of work in these large panel buildings also appeared to be less than ideal in these large-panel buildings (Wyllie, 1989).
OtherNotesContribution to Damage
Other Factors Construction Quality


Plan IrregularitiesNotesContribution to Damage
Perimeter boundary
Out-of-plane offsets in lateral resisting system
Non-orthogonal systems

Vertical IrregularitiesNotesContribution to Damage
Soft story
Weak story
Geometric variablility of lateral resisting system
In-plane discontinuity of lateral resisting system
Mass distribution
Change in stiffness

OtherNotesContribution to Damage
Other Factors Configuration

Lateral Load Resisting System‐General

StrengthNotesContribution to Damage
Overall lack of strength

StiffnessNotesContribution to Damage
Extreme Flexibility

Load PathNotesContribution to Damage
Anchorage of nonstructural elements
Out-of-plane capacity of walls
Diaphragm chords
Diaphragm openings

OtherNotesContribution to Damage
Other Factors Lateral Load Resisting System-General

Lateral Load Resisting System‐Frames

ColumnsNotesContribution to Damage
Shear strength
Flexural strength
Axial load ratio
Vertical load columns drift capacity
Interference of frame action by infill

BeamsNotesContribution to Damage
Strength relative to columns
Shear controlled behavior
Continuity of longitudinal reinforcing
Loss of vertical capacity
Interference of frame action by infill beams

JointsNotesContribution to Damage
Exterior Fine cracking at some panel joints (Wyllie, 1989).

OtherNotesContribution to Damage
Other Factors Lateral Load Resisting System-Frames

Lateral Load Resisting System‐Shear Walls

ShearNotesContribution to Damage
Diagonal tension/compression
Sliding Shear

FlexureNotesContribution to Damage
Compression zone buckling capacity
Discontinuity of wall
Boundary reinforcing fracture/buckling
Boundary Reinforcing at openings

OtherNotesContribution to Damage
Other Factors Lateral Load Resisting System-Shear Walls

Lateral Load Resisting System‐Infills

InfillsNotesContribution to Damage
Interference with frame action
Out of plane
Attachment to framing

OtherNotesContribution to Damage
Other Factors Lateral Load Resisting Systems-Infills

Lateral Load Resisting System‐Other

FoundationsNotesContribution to Damage
Liquefaction No evidence of liquefaction in Leninakan (Yegian and Ghahraman, 1992).
Surface Rupture

OtherNotesContribution to Damage
Pile/Pier tension capacity

MiscellaneousNotesContribution to Damage
Spread footing capacity
Other Factors Lateral Load Resisting Systems-Other-Foundations

OtherNotesContribution to Damage
Other Factors Lateral Load Resisting Systems-Other-Misc

Repair and Retrofit Information


Type of Retrofit or Repair


Other Retrofit or Repair

Performance Level


Hazard Level


Retrofit or Repair Code


Other Retrofit or Repair Code

Lateral Analysis


Other Lateral Analysis

Design Strategy

Retrofit Summary



Earthquake Engineering Research Institute (EERI).Annotated Slide Collection.1997.

Wyllie, L. A. and Filson J. R., August 1989. Performance of Engineered Structures. Earthquake Spectra, Special Supplement, Armenia Earthquake

Yelgian, M. K. and Ghahraman, V. G. October 1992. "The Armenia Earthquake of December 1988." Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts.

United States Geological Survey (USGS), 2012.Notes about the Armenia Earthquake, 7 December 1988 (Accessed: 24 July 2012).