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A comparative study on earthquake resistance of reinforced concrete and masonry residential buildings in small-scale cities of Turkey

Er Akan, Aslı
Today the vast majority of urban population in Turkey is living in multi-story apartment blocks constructed of reinforced concrete due to the fact that in the late 19th century concrete and steel took the place of traditional materials such as masonry. However, it cannot be denied that masonry is still a crucial material for load bearing walls, internal walls and cladding of buildings. In addition to this masonry construction system has many advantages. From the architectural point of view, it provides flexibility in plan, spatial composition, wide variety of colours and textures and an impressive appearance for external walls. From the construction point of view, masonry system eliminates the cost of the frame because the structure is also the enclosing wall. In spite of these advantages, until recently, masonry was not considered to be a convenient material for building construction in seismic zones of Turkey. Thus, in 1950’s for the residential building reinforced concrete started to be used as a construction material in every region of Turkey. This building material first became popular and was widely used but after a short while it was also used in smaller cities. Before the construction of reinforced concrete residential buildings each of these small-scale cities had their own local characteristics but after a rapid urbanization period all of these cities became similar to each other. Therefore, in this study firstly residential building typologies in some small-scale cities (Bolu, Düzce, Çankırı, Çorum, Kastamonu, Kırıkkale) are investigated and for these cities 4-storey masonry residential buildings is proposed instead of multi-story reinforced concrete apartment blocks. Here, it is aimed to enliven the use of masonry again in these regions. To achieve this aim it is necessary to verify the fact that it is possible to construct a four-story residential building with masonry bearing walls instead of reinforced concrete beam and column skeleton system keeping the existing plan scheme in other words without changing its architectural characteristics. In order to do this, 3D models are created to compare the behaviours of the masonry building and reinforced concrete building. The behavioural investigation of the two models is performed in the finite element platform with the help of SAP 2000. Finally it is certified that this proposal is successfully efficient.