Featured Image Courtesy CalOES

Stemming the Damage: Applying Lessons Learned from the Napa Earthquake

Twenty‐five years ago the Loma Prieta Earthquake forced us to rethink how communities prepare for the next “big one”. Have the efforts enacted to strengthen buildings – and protect lives – made of communities more resilient? Last year's Napa Earthquake once again proved that historic structures throughout California continue to be at risk of damage from earthquakes and other natural disasters despite programs put into place to minimize catastrophic loss. Using the Napa Earthquake as a case study in community resiliency, we'll examine what worked and what didn't to reduce damage, pick up the pieces and get back to normal...and learn what more could be done.



  • Cassandra Walker, Community Development Director (retired), City of Napa
  • David Cocke, President, Structural Focus
  • Terry Paret, Senior Associate, Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.
  • Alan Dreyfuss, Associate Principal, Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.

Learning Objectives

  1. Determine how seismic retrofit ordinances impact health, safety, and welfare in communities with unreinforced masonry buildings and other earthquake-prone structures
  2. Using case examples, evaluate the performance of retrofitted historic buildings versus buildings not retrofitted
  3. Identify which measures work and which measures fail in the face of a catastrophic earthquake
  4. Examine how to evaluate properties for their risk to health, safety, and welfare

Continuing Education

  • AIA (HSW)
    • Building Science and Performance
    • Design and Design Services
    • Insights
    • Materials and Methods
    • Practice
    • Project Types
  • AICP
    • Economic Development
    • Hazards
    • History
    • Law
    • Neighborhoods
    • Revitalization