Heritage buildings play a crucial role in passing cultural identity to future generations (Mısırlısoy & Günçe, 2016, pg. 94). However, indigenous vernacular Culture is fading rapidly due to neglect of historical sites, buildings and cores, and urbanization. Historical buildings preservation enhances the sustainability of monuments and sites as an important part of the past, the present, and the future. This calls for unceasing collecting, analyzing, filtering, recording, monitoring, and updating of data on historical buildings, as illustrated in Figure 4. The collected data will be vital in surveying, conservation planning, monitoring of post-construction, and management of historical buildings (Fadli & AlSaeed, 2019, p.2501).
Preservation of historic buildings and enhancing their usefulness is, therefore, key in urban heritage preservation (Fadli & AlSaeed, 2019). In instances where the historical building can no longer serve its initial use, a new function should be designed to preserve the heritage (Mısırlısoy & Günçe, 2016, p.96).
Historical places and buildings are being /have been repaired, changed, adapted, and developed to secure the future in the UK. It has been noted that comprehension of the historical significance of buildings or places does unlock development potential for extremely remote areas. It is, therefore, a useful tool for selling new developments (English Heritage, 2006).
English Heritage has adopted “Constructive Conservation” in effecting protection and adaptation measures in historical buildings. English Heritage aims at establishing a balance where archival qualities are reinforced through change, commercial, and architectural deliverables.
Constructive conservation offers opportunities for investment in repair, renovation, and adaptation of historic buildings. They are then used in economic recovery and financial growth of the countryside, towns, and cities in the UK. It is estimated that English Heritage advises 16,000 statutory consent applications annually. This is done from their nine regional offices on the impact of investing in Historical places. Below (Figure 1, Figure 2, and Figure 3) are attached pictures of historical sites before and after they were repaired and adapted (Heritage, 2006, p.154).
Figure 1: CLIFTON LIDO before (Left) and after (Right)repair and adaptation (English Heritage, 2006)
Figure 2: THE MONASTERY OF ST FRANCIS before (Left) and after (Right)repair and adaptation (English Heritage, 2006)
Figure 3: WEST OFFICES before (Left) and after (Right) repair and adaptation (English Heritage, 2006)
The process of renovating historic buildings is initiated by studying the archaeology of the building to unearth the cultural and historical importance of the building. Also, establish the qualities and defects of the historic building. A building survey then follows. A building survey is typically conducted to determine the alterations carried out on the initial plan, structure, and fittings of the buildings during its lifetime (Zhang, 2012, p.724). The building defects, technical and material properties, and load-bearing structure are also looked into.
Conservation plans and repair activities are typically designed to bring out the original qualities of the historic building. Heritage conservation is achieved by ensuring the finishes and the fixtures are intact (Nadin, 2001, p.73). While it may not be possible to restore the original building, mapping of relevant elements is customarily done. Insignificance elements are mostly left out. The defects recorded during survey are analyzed in order to design the effective repair method. Major defects attract major building works. In other cases, new buildings are undertaken.
Whenever a new building is being undertaken, connectivity between both parts is critical. Consequently, the form, technical, and organizational problems are assessed and solved to ensure that the old and the new buildings conform (England, 2013, p.41). The slight differences between the new and old buildings provide room for expression. Currently, the majority of architectural concepts contain the basic idea, structure, and measurement of the historic building. Additionally, they also create a new and independent building. This is done by sensitive modification of basic principles.
Figure 4: Analysis impact of conserving the past
In conclusion, repair, renovation, adaption and development of historical buildings will not only preserve the cultural heritage of different communities and nations, it will also boost development agenda. Once they have been renovated, they offer a platform for selling the new innovations and developments. With this in mind, the cost implication of repairing the historical buildings will be recovered and exceeded through commercial activities which will be undertaken in this places. Moreover, additional income through tourism will ensure the project earns the country foreign exchange. The incentives on profitability through commercial activities plus foreign exchange through tourism should therefore motivate public and private institutions to undertake in renovating the historical buildings.
England, H., 2013. Constructive conservation: sustainable growth for historic places. Historic England, London, UK.
Fadli, F., and Saeed, M., 2019. Digitizing Vanishing Architectural Heritage; The Design and Development of Qatar Historic Buildings Information Modeling [Q-HBIM] Platform. Sustainability, 11(9), p.2501.
Heritage, E., 2006. Shared interest: celebrating investment in the historic environment. English Heritage.
Mısırlısoy, D., and Günçe, K., 2016. Adaptive reuse strategies for heritage buildings: A holistic approach. Sustainable Cities and Society, 26, pp.91-98.
Nadin, V., and Cullingworth, B., 2001. Town and Country Planning in the UK. Routledge.
Zhang, W., 2012. Local Culture on the Reuse of old Buildings in the Industrial Area.