A swarm of 1,000 earthquakes hit Southern California — how nervous should we be? by Timothy Hodgson

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The seismic storm that unleashed more than 1,000 small earthquakes in San Bernardino and Riverside counties these last three weeks elicited what has become a typical reaction in quake country.

To some, the “swarmageddon” 40 miles east of downtown Los Angeles brought fear that a bigger threat was coming. To others, as long as they didn’t feel a shake, it was easy to just put it out of their minds.

The California earthquake drought is an opportunity. Will we take it? by Timothy Hodgson

A collapsed apartment complex after the 1994 Northridge earthquake. (Rolando Otero / Los Angeles Times)

A collapsed apartment complex after the 1994 Northridge earthquake. (Rolando Otero / Los Angeles Times)

Research published this week confirmed that California has been in a century-long earthquake drought. Analysis of geologic records on the state’s main faults — the San Andreas, San Jacinto and Hayward — going back 1,000 years shows that the gaps between large quakes are, currently, longer than to be expected from random variation. Southern California has been particularly quiet for the last 25 years, with the rate of small and moderate earthquakes almost half of what it had been in the previous half a century.

This hiatus in major shaking means that we aren’t getting as much movement as plate tectonics require. So at some point we’ll start having more frequent earthquakes, and things will — over geologic time — average out again. (We won’t necessarily have a bigger earthquake, just a period in which they are more frequent.)

As the U.S. Geological Survey scientists point out, because we don’t know why we are in a drought, we don’t know when it will end.

But we do know that it will end. The Pacific plate is still on its very slow move carrying Los Angeles toward San Francisco. Just as the rains came this winter, some year the big earthquake will come.

Pacific Gateway - Multi-Block Development of Office, Hotel, Navy Administration, Retail, Museum, and Parking by Timothy Hodgson

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KPFF is providing structural engineering services for a four block, over 4 million square foot redevelopment design-build project located on North Harbor Drive, bounded by Broadway on the north and Pacific Highway on the east, in San Diego, California. The site will be developed as a mix of administrative space to be used by the Department of the Navy, commercial office space, retail space, hotel units, parking, and public attractions. The area of these six buildings and parking garage is approximately 4,276,700. Additional open area above the parking garage requiring structural engineering design is approximately 406,700-sf. Total structural project area is approximately 4,683,400-sf.

Construction starting on Manchester’s $1.5B Navy complex project by Timothy Hodgson


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Developer Doug Manchester’s long-stalled $1.5 billion plan to redevelop Navy property on San Diego’s waterfront with hotels, offices and restaurants will break ground next month.

Manchester Financial Group announced Thursday that it had secured the necessary financing to start construction of its Manchester Pacific Gateway development, regarded as the single largest and costliest project in downtown San Diego history.

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Knauf announces team that will lead USG subject to and following the completion of the pending merger by Bryce HODGSON

IPHOFEN, Germany--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Gebr. Knauf KG (“Knauf”) today announced the U.S.-based leadership team that will be responsible for the continued success of USG Corporation (NYSE: USG) after Knauf’s acquisition of USG is complete. The closing is subject to pending regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.

The new leadership team will be led by Christopher Griffin, currently CEO of Knauf Insulation North America. Mr. Griffin has over 35 years of experience in the building materials industry, including 18 years with USG Corporation where he served in several senior roles, including Chief Operating Officer.

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USG and Knauf secure final regulatory approval for pending transaction; expect to complete merger on April 24, 2019 by Bryce HODGSON

IPHOFEN, Germany & CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Apr 18, 2019--USG Corporation (NYSE: USG) and Gebr. Knauf KG (“Knauf”) today announced that all required regulatory approvals and clearances needed to close the previously announced acquisition of USG by Knauf have been received. Due to the national holidays in Germany on April 19 and April 22, it is expected that the merger will close on April 24, 2019, pending customary closing requirements.

USG stockholders at the effective time of the merger will receive $43.50 in cash, without interest and subject to tax withholding as applicable. The closing consideration is in addition to the special dividend of $0.50 per share of USG common stock that was previously paid on October 2, 2018 to holders of record as of the close of business on August 21, 2018.

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Move over, San Andreas: There’s an ominous new fault in town by Bryce HODGSON

An emerging fault system along the Nevada border is shaking up the tech  industry's latest frontier—and only a small group of scientists is  paying attention.

An emerging fault system along the Nevada border is shaking up the tech industry's latest frontier—and only a small group of scientists is paying attention.

U.S. route 395 is a geologic master class disguised as a road. It runs north from the arid outskirts of Los Angeles, carrying travelers up to Reno along the eastern flank of the Sierra Nevada. On the way, they pass the black cinder cones of Coso Volcanic Field and the eroded scars of a mighty 19th-century earthquake near Lone Pine. In winter, drivers might see steam rising from Hot Creek, where water boils up from an active supervolcano deep underground. About an hour from the Nevada border, Mono Lake appears, with its bulbous and surreal mineral formations known as tufa towers. Even for someone with no particular interest in rocks, these are captivating, otherworldly sights. But for James Faulds, Nevada’s state geologist, they are something more—clues to a great tectonic mystery unfolding in the American West. If he’s right, all of this, from the wastes of the Mojave Desert to the night-lit casinos of Reno, will someday be beachfront property.

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SDSU selects SoccerCity architect for new stadium in Mission Valley by Bryce HODGSON

The Banc of California stadium, which was designed by Gensler, is an inspiration for San Diego State University’s stadium. (Los Angeles Times)

The Banc of California stadium, which was designed by Gensler, is an inspiration for San Diego State University’s stadium. (Los Angeles Times)

San Diego State University has selected the Gensler architecture firm to design its proposed $250 million, 35,000-seat, multi-use stadium in Mission Valley.

Gensler had previously drawn up designs for SoccerCity, the rival vision for the stadium site that lost out to the SDSU West initiative in last November’s election.

The university unveiled plans for the Mission Valley site in November 2017 that were designed by Carrier Johnson + Culture. The firm was competing against Gensler and two other finalists for the project contract. Efforts to reach Carrier Johnson for comment were unsuccessful.

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