The progressive damage and subsequent demolition of unreinforced masonry (URM) buildings arising from the Canterbury earthquake sequence is reported. A dataset was compiled of all URM buildings located within the Christchurch CBD, including information on location, building characteristics, and damage levels after each major earthquake in this sequence. A general description of the overall damage and the hazard to both building occupants and to nearby pedestrians due to debris falling from URM buildings is presented with several case study buildings used to describe the accumulation of damage over the earthquake sequence. The benefit of seismic improvement techniques that had been installed to URM buildings is shown by the reduced damage ratios reported for increased levels of retrofit. Demolition statistics for URM buildings in the Christchurch CBD are also reported and discussed.

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