Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Sustainable Preservation

"Every year, another 1 million acres of farmland in the United States is given over to buildings," Carroon.

Sustainable Preservation by Jean Carroon is, mostly, viewable through Google books.

There is a clear explanation of how EXISTING buildings are inherently green.
It is important to explain what this means to those you speak to...
Often, I overhear preservation professionals throwing out these key phrases with little background information.
The general public doesn't have the facts, and offering a few sentences after making such claims is very helpful in convincing those who aren't in the know.

The concept of "long-life/loose-fit"  (as coined by Steve Brand in How Building Learn/ What Happens After they're Built) is noted in this volume, and it is really the zinger for the argument pro-sustainability. Historic Preservation has the adaptive reuse method, which demonstrates successful long-life/loose-fit examples.
Layering this concept with conventional preservation practices shows that we can respectfully add green technologies to historic buildings while keeping to our traditional standards. It just takes a little more thinking outside of the box to appropriate design a retrofit project that both enhances and respects the EXISTING building.

Additionally, the complex nature of construction costs have slashed the argument for new construction as more cost effective than greening retrofits. Carroon references two reports by Davis Langdon that "there are so many cost factors in construction today that it is nearly impossible to detect any statistically significant difference between the cost of conventional and green buildings."

The quote by Stewart Brand states that, "A building is not something you finish. A building is something you start." What the take home is from this book is that Sustainable Preservation is real, happening, and what we should be convincing the greater community to do.But first, outreach that inspires acculturation toward reuse is necessary.

No comments:

Post a Comment