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Researchers Test Cannon Beach Tsunami-Proof Building

Researchers at Oregon State University will test a scale model of a tsunami-proof building Monday.

 Tsunami-Proof Building
Cannon Beach, Oregon community leaders hope to build the first tsunami evacuation center in the Uniter States.

The raised structure planned for Cannon Beach is thought to be the first building in the U-S designed as a tsunami evacuation center. The structure would double as the Cannon Beach City Hall.

In the event of a catastrophic tsunami, it could house 1,500 evacuees.

Architect Jay Raskin is on the committee that designed the building. He says the center would stand out because it would rest on columns high enough to let a major tsunami wash underneath.

Jay Raskin: "If you're asking for people to evacuate into a building, it has to look safe. So you actually have to design it so when someone is looking at it in that moment of panic as they're trying to get away from a tsunami that that they say that that's a building that they'd like to get into."

OSU researchers plan to see what happens when they crash waves on a mock-up of the evacuation center in the university's wave pool.

Cannon Beach's new city hall remains a long way from construction. The estimated $4 million needed to build it would likely come from a mix of federal and state grants and a local bond.


Web extras:

Oregon State University's wave cams

Tsunami Hazard Map for Cannon Beach