Most of Dominican capital's high rises don’t meet seismic norms, experts say

DominicanToday.com - A study by experts contracted by the United States embassy found that most of the country’s high rises don’t meet the norms and security systems in a seismic zone such as Dominican Republic.

The construction experts and seismology specialists said some time ago the U.S. Embassy published an ad requesting apartments for their diplomatic personnel in buildings no higher than 4 floors, but without underground parking or basements.

According to Omar Rancier, Luis G. Carpio and Leonardo Reyes, the study by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), included constructions and public buildings of considerable height, found that developers of tall structures permanently violated the country’s construction regulations and norms.

The experts, interviewed on Dominicana FM, said the Public Works inspectors and supervisors who should verify and enforce compliance with the norms are regularly bribed.

Rancier Valdez, head of the Economy Ministry’s Planning and Development Department, said in many cases the City councils’ Urban Planning offices applied the regulations, but “were violated by council members, through illegal City Council resolutions, motorized by acts of corruption by the developers and builders.”

In the investigation conducted by the foreign and local experts, in Santo Domingo’s so called Central Polygon (within the avenues Kennedy, 27 de Febrero, Maximo Gomez and Churchill) a high number of buildings with parking in the first floor “has a condition which are technically at high risk against an earthquake.”

Go back | Date: 10 Aug 2009
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