For years, Angelenos have heard that the “big one” is coming. But are buildings able to withstand 6.7 or greater magnitude earthquake? And if they are, will the cost of retrofitting them get passed directly to tenants?
The Los Angeles City Council is exploring ways to help property owners finance seismic retrofits this week, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The retrofits are required by law in roughly 15,000 buildings.
Retrofits can cost $130,000 for wood-frame buildings and millions of dollars for larger concrete structures. Some property owners are selling buildings rather than put in the money to retrofit them.
Retrofits of wooden structures must happen in seven years and concrete building retrofits must happen in 25 years. L.A. has cost-recovery programs for owners, but no upfront financial assistance, according Councilman Mitchell Englander.
Funding may also come from the city’s Affordable Housing Trust Fund, the Times reported.
Last year, Santa Monica approved a seismic retrofitting plan, which requires improvements in roughly 2,000 buildings.