Adaptive Reuse: A critical Review

Lanz, Francesca and Pendlebury, John (2022) Adaptive Reuse: A critical Review. The Journal of Architecture . ISSN 1360-2365

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Adaptive Reuse: A critical Review
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Buildings have always been reused for both pragmatic and symbolic reasons. However, out of the turbulence of the mid-twentieth century, stimulated by reactions against modern ‘clean-sweep’ planning, the burgeoning conservation movement, and emergent architectural praxis, a new field of policy and practice emerged in the 1970s, which came to be termed adaptive reuse. The last decade or so has seen a flourishing of interest in adaptive reuse both on the ground and in scholarship. Today, the practice is witnessed across the architectural spectrum, from ‘starchitects’ to the most modest community-generated projects. Adaptive reuse is ideologically supported through heritage and carbon reduction campaigning and is evident in policy and education.
In this paper, we critically review the rise of adaptive reuse scholarship and the emergent epistemology it represents, with a focus on the past 20 years and more recent monographs in the field. What we discern in these texts is a recent shift in the debate toward a more theoretical approach to the subject. While the debate on adaptive reuse continuously developed from the 1970s, it did so mostly in continuity, with a focus on mapping and depicting an architectural phenomenon and identifying tools and strategies to instruct practitioners and designers. However, more recent works on adaptive reuse are increasingly seeking to go beyond a pragmatic and practice-focused approach and to investigate adaptive reuse in a more conceptual way. In doing so, they might open up the debate to new disciplinary contributions beyond the domain of architecture and design. This paper aims to outline and contribute to this shift.

Keywords:adaptive reuse
Subjects:K Architecture, Building and Planning > K100 Architecture
Divisions:College of Arts
ID Code:50029
Deposited On:04 Jul 2022 20:55

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