Are the repairs necessary?

The current project is seismically retrofitting the Marin Center VMA to mitigate risks to the occupants of the facility in the event of a major seismic incident at the site. The improvements are designed to elevate the structural seismic performance to a level that meets the current code standards for life and safety. Project scope includes strengthening of the theater stage roof diaphragm, strengthening of the stage walls, bracing of the suspended control room, and bracing of the plaster ceilings. In addition, the project will include reroofing above the theater stage. 

While the building was closed for the Seismic Retrofit project, investigative studies were conducted to evaluate the rest of the VMA building structure and systems. The report concluded that the building’s perimeter foundation is structurally sound, and that the elements supporting the domed roof are performing as designed. However, the subgrade below the building has settled significantly. The settlement has damaged the floor slabs, internal sewer, roof drain plumbing, and electrical systems. The report also indicated that the emergency egress lighting system does not meet current code requirements and noted several other electrical and mechanical deficiencies. 

To ensure the VMA is safe for public use when it reopens, a separate, subsequent project is being planned to address the ground settlement and deficiencies in the building systems after the work for the Seismic Retrofit Project is completed. This additional work will require the building to remain closed through at least fall 2025. 

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