David Mar


David believes the key to successful design is seeing and optimizing projects as a whole while controlling construction costs. To this end, his designs are inventive and technically ingenious. Some of his many creative contributions to seismic engineering include vertically post-tensioned shear walls and rocking braced frames that return to plumb; tilting rigid spines; and skin-reinforced straw bale shear walls. David has a keen interest in Lean design and in set-based design, and he actively applies these principles to all of his work. David’s focus on seismic and sustainable design has positioned him at the forefront of the green-building movement. His enthusiasm for “deep green” innovation has fueled the expansion of his repertoire from traditional steel, concrete, and wood construction to the use of such materials as rammed earth, bamboo, straw bale, timber frame, and structural insulated panels. In 2013, David served as technical director for FEMA P807: Guidelines for the Seismic Retrofit of Weak-Story Multi-Unit Wood-Framed Structures. His out-of-the-box thinking resulted in a comprehensive design methodology that yielded high-performance retrofits at a low cost—thus solving one of structural engineering’s most vexing problems. David received his undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of California, Berkeley. He has lectured at numerous institutions, including UC Berkeley, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Stanford University, and the Lean Construction Institute. In 1998, David was honored with SEAONC’s H.J. Brunnier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Structural Design. David is also an accomplished songwriter and guitarist. He is currently writing material for his third album.