Retrofitting heritage buildings for energy and seismic upgrades




Kobraei, Mohsen

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



The application of retrofit options to existing heritage buildings has become one of the most interesting topics in construction. In Victoria, BC, Canada, only 4% of commercial or institutional heritage buildings have been upgraded to current building codes in the last 10 years. Remaining 96% buildings exist with poor energy performance characteristics and a risk to occupant safety in the event of a damaging earthquake. This study investigates the importance and benefits of simultaneous energy and seismic retrofitting of existing heritage buildings. It presents a case study for a building with identifiable heritage value, located in Victoria, BC, Canada, and analyzes five feasible options in terms of energy retrofitting and presents a solution for both seismic and energy upgrading. To this aim, the energy retrofit options are compared based on the amount of saved energy, annual heating demand and estimated costs. The seismic solution is designed based on the weakness and needs of the building, and cost-effectiveness. Finally, the best solution is selected for a building that dates back to the beginning of the 20th century. This study shows that the integration of energy and seismic retrofitting of heritage buildings provides economic benefits to owners while improving energy savings and building safety.



Seismic retrofit, Energy retrofit, Carbon emissions, PHPP, Energy saving, Cost-benefit analysis