The school cafeteria is a C-shaped one-story building that is made up of three wings separated by 12-mm expansion joints. The rear building is the kitchen while the two separate buildings on either side of the kitchen are used as dining halls or classroo...

Prepared By: Quinn Peck
Occupancy: Education
Year Built:
Height: ft
Number of stories: 1
Stories below ground: 0
Size: 15000 gsf
Original Code:
Modification: Unknown
Year Modified:
Code of Modification:
Lateral Load System: MomentFrame
Other Load System:
Vertical Load System: Slabl_Beams_Columns
Other Vertical Load System:
Foundation : Unknown
Other Foundation :
Country: Haiti
City: Port-au-Prince
Street: Delmas 33, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Latitude: 18.554
Longitude: -72.3032


School Cafeteria

Earthquake Information



Earthquake Date 1/12/2010
Moment Magnitude 7
Epicentral Distance 27
Local Intensity VIII MMI
Site Description Most of Port-au-Prince sits in the southwest corner of the Cul de Sac depression and is primarily underlain by Mio-Pliocene sedimentary deposits, relatively stiff soils with low impedance. It has been suggested that the low-lying Mio-Pliocene deposits in central Port-au-Prince may have amplified peak ground acceleration values by an approximate value of 1.8 . (Hough et al., 2011) A 2011 analysis of the site conditions throughout Port-au-Prince indicated that away from the foothills, the soil conditions largely coincide with NEHRP site class C. (Cox et al., 2011)
PGA Lateral None (g)
PGA Vertical None (g)
Ground motion recording stations
Distance to station None
Station Latitude None
Station Longitude None
Ground Motion Summary The main shock of the 2010 Haiti earthquake occurred along the Enriquillo Fault at a depth of approximately 13 km and a location of 18.457, -72.533. The focal mechanism indicates left-lateral oblique-slip motion on an east-west oriented fault with a fault rupture from east to west. The source zone had a down-dip dimension of approximately 15 km and an along-strike dimension of about 30 km - a source area about one third the size of a typical 7.0 magnitude earthquake. There were no active strong-motion instruments in Haiti so macroseismic observations offer the best estimation of shaking intensity during the main shock. Additionally, local geologic structure heavily influences the degree of ground motion amplification, further obscuring potential ground motion estimates.


Damage Information



Performance summary

The structure sustained localized structural damage in two areas, likely a result of the building's irregular geometry and pounding of the two dining hall wings and the kitchen structure at the expansion joints. Other columns in the structure appeared to have performed well, suggesting that interaction with partial-height masonry infill walls was a cause of damage to columns. There was significant damage to nonstructural elements including the shattering of windows due to significant displacement demands.

Damage state description

The cafeteria sustained significant damage in two main areas of the building. Spalling and shear failures in the columns at the front of the dining hall wings were extensive and likely a result of the presence of partial-height infill walls and the significant displacement demands from the torsional response of the structure. Damage was also observed in the full-height masonry walls and columns where the two dining hall wings met the kitchen wing at the expansion joints.

Summary of causes of damage

1. The irregular geometry of the building and the location of the full-height unreinforced masonry walls likely resulted in a torsional response concentrating displacement and damage at columns near the front of the building. 2. The effects of the significant displacement demands at the front of the structure were amplified by the presence of partial-height unreinforced masonry infill walls at the columns near the front of the building. The combination of large displacement demands and significantly limited clear-height resulted in severe shear damage in these columns. 3. The three structurally-independent wings separated by 12 mm expansion gaps pounded during the shaking, concentrating damage at the rear columns and full-height unreinforced masonry shear walls.

Observed Design and Construction Characteristics


Construction Quality

MaterialsNotesContribution to Damage
Reinforcing steel Corrosion observed in reinforcing steel, possible use of smooth reinforcing bars.

ExecutionNotesContribution to Damage
Conveyance/placement of concrete
Field variance with design documents
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 All observed shear failures were at locations where adjacent walls limited the columns' clear heights. Unobstructed columns appeared to have performed well.
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
Interior Reinforcing within beam-column joints did not appear to have continuous reinforcing.
Exterior Reinforcing within beam-column joints did not appear to have continuous reinforcing.
Corner Reinforcing within beam-column joints did not appear to have continuous reinforcing.

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
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

Hough, S. E., Young, A., Altidor, J. R., Anglade, D., Given, D., Mildor, S., 2011. Site characterization and site response in Port-au-Prince, Haiti,Earthquake Spectra,27, S137S155.
Cox, B. R., Bachhuber, J., Rathje, E., Wood, C. M., Kottke, A., Green, R., and Olson, S., 2011. Shear-wave-velocity and geology-based seismic microzonation of Port-au-Prince, Haiti,Earthquake Spectra27, S67S92.

United States Geological Survey (USGS), 2010a.USGS ShakeMap: Haiti Region, (16 July 2012).

United States Geological Survey (USGS), 2010b.USGS Peak Ground Accel. Map (in %g): Haiti Region, (16 July 2012).

Telleen, K., 2012. "January 12, 2010 Haiti Earthquake: Post-earthquake reconnaissance." Earthquake Engineering Research Institute. Oakland, California. 25 June 2012.
Zhang, D., Federico, G., Telleen, K., Schellenberg, A., Fleishman, R., and Maffei, J., 2011. Structural analyses to replicate the observed damage to engineered buildings from the January 2010 Haiti Earthquake, inProceedings, Structures Concress 2011.

National Science Foundation (NSF) RAPID Team, 2010. Photo collection.

Federico, G., 2010. Personal photo collection.