In this article, a performance-based seismic design (PBD) methodology is proposed for the design of reinforced concrete buildings, taking into account the influence of infill walls. Two variants of the PBD framework are examined: The first is based on the non-linear static analysis procedure (NSP) while the second relies on the non-linear dynamic analysis procedure (NDP). Both design approaches are compared in the context of structural optimization with reference to the best possible design achieved for each case examined. Life-cycle cost analysis is considered a reliable tool for assessing the performance of structural systems and it is employed in this study for assessing the optimum designs obtained. The optimization part of the problem is performed with an Evolutionary Algorithm while three performance objectives are implemented in all formulations of the design procedures. The two most important findings can be summarized as follows: (i) if structural realization follows the design assumptions, then total expected life-cycle cost of the three type of structures, bare, fully infilled and open ground story, is almost the same and (ii) if an open ground story building is designed as bare or as fully infilled frame, real performance will be much worse than anticipated at the design stage.
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