Construction practice in San Salvador, as in the rest of El Salvador, had remained practically unchanged since the time of Spanish colonization up to around 1942. From then on, building practices from many other countries have been introduced, and they have exerted a major influence. The last four decades can be divided into five stages or periods induced by events such as earthquakes in El Salvador and neighboring countries, as well as the incorporation of foreign codes in lieu of a local one and the introduction of new techniques, such as soil mechanics and microseismic investigation. The incorporation of practices based on foreign codes contributed significantly to the improvement of construction practice but occasionally led to misinterpretations, e.g. in the evaluation of seismic actions. At present, a number of studies and records are available that can be used as a basis for the elaboration of an earthquake resistant design code.

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