Culver City

Wood-Frame Soft-Story Structures

Culver City adopted Ordinance No. 2021-013 on September 27, 2021. Culver City’s Mandatory Seismic Strengthening Provisions for Existing Wood-Frame Buildings with Soft, Weak or Open-Front Walls can be found here.

Scope

Culver City’s mandatory wood-frame soft-story program applies to existing buildings that have the following characteristics:

  • Wood-frame construction (entire building or wood-framed portions thereof)

  • Construction permit was applied for prior to October 23, 1978

  • Ground floor or basement contains parking or other similar open floor space that causes soft, weak, or open-front wall lines (or the majority of the ground floor or basement contains an open floor space) where there exists at least one or more levels above

The program does not apply to detached single-family homes or detached single-family homes with accessory dwelling units.

Priority Designations

Enforcement of the Culver City wood-frame soft-story ordinance will be carried out in phases based on the following priority designations:

PRIORITY LEVEL BUILDING DESCRIPTION
Priority I. More than 12 units, or 3  stories with more than 6 units
Priority II. 5 to 12 units and not categorized as Priority I
Priority III. Buildings not falling within Priority I or Priority II (includes but not limited to duplexes, triplexes, and townhouses)

 

Timeline

The city of Culver City requires that wood-frame soft-story building retrofits adhere to the timeline shown below. An official Order is issued to owners of buildings that fall within the scope of the ordinance in order of the priority levels summarized above. Once the Order has been received, the subsequent deadlines are initiated.

MILESTONE REQUIREMENT
BEGIN PROCESS Service of the Notice to the Building Owner
1 YEAR AFTER NOTICE Deadline to submit screening report
2 YEARS AFTER NOTICE Deadline to submit retrofit plans
3 YEARS AFTER NOTICE Deadline to obtain permit
4 YEARS AFTER NOTICE Deadline to commence construction
5 YEARS AFTER NOTICE Deadline to complete construction
 

Contacts

Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.
Phone: 626.696.4650
E-mail: seismicordinances@wje.com

Culver City Department of Building and Safety
Phone: 310.253.5800
E-mail: building.safety@culvercity.org