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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Performance-based wind design of tall buildings : concepts, frameworks, and applications Okanagan Bezabeh, Matiyas


The rapid growth of the urban population and the associated environmental concerns are central challenges of the 21st century. In response, recent urban design strategies in North America, Asia, and Europe are exploring the use of sustainable construction materials and performance-based design approaches for tall buildings. Timber is a sustainable and renewable construction material. The use of engineered wood products within mass-timber buildings makes them lighter and more flexible than concrete or steel buildings. These characteristics can potentially result in excessive dynamic oscillations when excited by strong winds and thus limit the height that they can reach. Mass-timber buildings exceeding 12 stories are an exception in the 2020 Canadian building codes; hence they can only be realized using performance-based design approaches. Furthermore, the current wind design practice for tall buildings considers the first significant yielding point as the ultimate limit state, making tall buildings costly due to an excessive design safety margin. Hence, to overcome these limitations, the subject of this dissertation is to develop and apply new performance-based wind design (PBWD) frameworks for tall buildings. Initially, this dissertation develops two unified PBWD frameworks for the design of tall buildings by adapting and revisiting the Alan G. Davenport Wind Loading Chain. Thereafter, the issue of damage accumulation in PBWD is studied in two steps. The first step performs a parametric study through nonlinear response history analyses (NRHA) of bilinear and self-centering SDOF systems under long-duration along-wind loads. The results from this step show the capability of self-centering systems in controlling the possible wind-induced damage accumulation. The second step demonstrates the benefit of PBWD in terms of economics and safety through structural reliability analysis. Subsequently, the application of the PBWD frameworks is presented in four phases. The first three phases focus on the performance-based serviceability design of tall mass-timber buildings. The fourth phase presents two examples illustrating the PBWD of 40-story tall steel buildings with self-centering braces. NRHA are conducted to assess the studied buildings' performance beyond the first significant yield point. Overall, the results show the possibility of achieving economic and enhanced structural performance through PBWD.

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