Shear walls

Bending moments and shear forces are the dominant seismic actions within walls. Possible expressive architectural strategies include differentiating between wall chords and webs; that is, between moments and shear forces (Fig. 17.6). Chord dimensions and wall thicknesses can be

▲ 17.6 Reinforced concrete shear walls where the wall chords are differentiated from the webs. Educational building, Wellington.
▲ 17.7 A steel cross-braced diaphragm at first floor level. Library, Palmerston North, New Zealand.
▲ 17.8 Sketch of a segment of the façade of the Nunotani Headquarters building, Tokyo.

varied in response to force intensity. One approach that articulates varying intensities of shear force and the need for a plastic hinge at a wall base without penetrations, has been to increase the area of fenestration towards the top of a wall (Fig. 5.8). But far more explicit examples of shear walls expressing their structural actions are possible (Fig. 17.3(b)).

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