Gary C. Hart – October 21, 2017

PEER is saddened to hear of the passing of Gary C. Hart, 73, on October 21, 2017.

Gary C. Hart

Gary C. Hart

Gary Curtis Hart was professor emeritus at UCLA Civil and Environmental Engineering, and a former principal emeritus with Thornton Tomasetti engineering firm.

Gary Hart was born in San Bernardino, California. He received a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Southern California, and he earned master’s and doctoral degrees in structural engineering from Stanford University in 1966 and 1968, respectively.

Professor Hart began his career in 1968 as a civil engineering assistant professor at UCLA. Throughout his tenure at UCLA, Gary also had a parallel career as a consulting engineer. He started his own consulting business, Hart Consultant Group, in 1992, which he sold in 2001 to Weidlinger Associates Inc., where he served as a principal and director until 2015. He joined Thornton Tomasetti through its merger with Weidlinger in 2015, where he functioned as principal Emeritus.

Gary Hart specialized in building investigation and forensic engineering, performance-based design and structural analysis of buildings. His research interests included the analysis and design of buildings for earthquake and wind loading, and he was very active in the areas of design of tall buildings, reinforced masonry buildings, seismic strengthening of existing and historic buildings, and seismic risk. Research and design approaches involved probabilistic methods, reliability theory, and the theory of linear and nonlinear structural dynamics. A major component of his most recent research was the evaluation of strengthening of existing structures for earthquake hazards. In this area he developed analytical and design methods for use of base isolators, dampers and composites for seismic strengthening. He was also very active with the Los Angeles City Special Committees on Reinforced Concrete Buildings and Steel Buildings after the Northridge (1994) earthquake. He served as the editor of International Journal on the Structural Design of Tall Buildings.

Gary Hart was involved in the California universities committee, organized under the auspices of CUREE, that developed the early concepts and organizational structural for the PEER Center in 1995 and 1996, and he continued as an influential and positive voice in advising the PEER leadership during its first ten years. Most recently in 2015, he participated in a workshop meeting on seismic evaluation and upgrading of existing tall buildings.

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