Tolerable Deformations

by Harvey E. Wahls, (F.ASCE), North Carolina State Univ, Raleigh, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Vertical and Horizontal Deformations of Foundations and Embankments


Current criteria for tolerable movements of buildings, bridges and other structures are reviewed. Tolerable values of total and differential settlement, relative rotation, relative deflection and tilt are reported and discussed. The tolerable movement criteria for buildings are traced from their origins in the 1950s to the current development of Eurocode 7, which presents these criteria in the context of limit state design. Tolerable movement criteria for bridges are based on a 1985 FHWA study by Moulton. The criteria for both buildings and bridges are shown to be based primarily on studies of the settlement records of damaged and undamaged structures. The relations of tolerable movements to levels of damage and other factors are discussed.

Subject Headings: Deformation (mechanics) | Soil settlement | Infrastructure construction | Building design | Soil deformation | Damage (structural) | Structural settlement | Differential settlement

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