The main objective of this paper is to establish floor accelerations to be used for shake table testing of operational and functional components that are sensitive mainly to horizontal accelerations. For this purpose, two different ensembles of floor accelerations were generated from nonlinear time–history dynamic analyses of three- and six-storey building models incorporating ductile reinforced concrete cantilevered walls. The first ensemble was generated based on synthetic ground motions representative of the intraplate regions of eastern Canada, and the second ensemble was generated from synthetic ground motions representative of the crustal and subcrustal earthquakes of western Canada. The ground motions were selected based on the deaggregations of the seismic hazard for each region in terms of most likely magnitude – epicentral distance scenarios. The building models were designed in accordance with the current seismic provisions of the National Building Code of Canada applicable for each region. Application of the resulting floor accelerations in shake table testing of free-standing bookcases and interior partition walls is reported in a companion paper.Key words: floor accelerations, ground motions, nonlinear dynamic analyses, nonstructural, operational and functional components.