Sustainable heritage development: learning from urban conservation of heritage projects in non western contexts

Elnokaly, Amira and Elseragy, Ahmed (2013) Sustainable heritage development: learning from urban conservation of heritage projects in non western contexts. European Journal of Sustainable Development, 2 (1). pp. 31-56. ISSN 2239-5938

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Urban conservation has been a subject of academic and professional discourse for over
three decades. Conservation in this paper is seen as an umbrella term that covers a wide
spectrum of issues that can be classified under three categories: socio-physical, sociocultural,
and environmental concerns. It is also manifested as a process of evolutionary
development which involves preserving, restoring, and adapting old structures, while
introducing new ones; a process that respects the continuity of history and tradition, the
needs of inhabitants and their cultural aspirations. This understanding indicates that urban
conservation is a process of continuous yet controlled interventions in the environment.
The extent and the degree of such an intervention is dependent upon crucial factors that
include the value system adopted by the society, the resources available, and the cultural
and environmental context within which such an intervention takes place. With an
ultimate goal to discern lessons from urban conservation practices, urban rehabilitation and
adaptive re-use is discussed with reference to a number of non-western case studies. The
paper aims at exploring the merits of six conservation and rehabilitation projects which
have received considerable coverage and recognition on a national and international level
while they have not been put into contextual comparison with others. Merits of these
projects are analyzed and highlighted in this article to work as an archetype for similar
projects around the world. The paper concludes that to maintain sustainability of the
revitalisation and urban conservation approaches, the typical urban tissue and essential
qualities of the historic areas and of the life of the communities residing there should be
maintained, while adapting the physical structures and activities to some of today’s

Keywords:Cultural sustainability; Sustainable heritage development; Belonging and identity; Sustainable urban Conservation; Rehabilitation and revitalization; Environmental quality; Non-western contexts; Strategies and strategic plans.
Subjects:K Architecture, Building and Planning > K250 Conservation of Buildings
K Architecture, Building and Planning > K100 Architecture
Divisions:College of Arts > School of Architecture & Design > School of Architecture & Design (Architecture)
ID Code:8485
Deposited On:29 Mar 2013 11:15

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