Abstract

This work focuses on the analysis of the multiple interactions between soil layers and civil-engineering structures in dense urban areas submitted to a seismic wave. To investigate such phenomena, called site–city interaction (sci) herein, two simplified site–city configurations are considered: a homogeneous, periodically spaced city and a heterogeneous, nonperiodically spaced city, both on a constant- depth basin model. These 2D boundary-element method models are subjected to a vertically incident plane SH Ricker wavelet. A parametric study of the city parameters (density of buildings and their natural frequencies) and the thickness of the basin is carried out to characterize the sci and to investigate its sensitivity to some governing parameters. The following parameters are analyzed: building vibrations, induced ground motion, ground-motion perturbations inside and outside the city, spatial coherency, and kinetic energy of the “urban wave field.” A so-called site–city resonance is reached when the soil fundamental frequency and structure eigenfrequencies coincide; building vibrations and ground motion are then significantly decreased and the spatial coherency of the urban field is also strongly modified. Building density and city configuration play a crucial role in the energy distribution inside the city.

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