Difficult Buildings To Discuss

“For Churches, a Temptation to Sell” by C. J. Hughes is a good overview of the issues involved with old religious buildings and preservation. The specifics in the article are related to the real estate pressures in New York, but the general themes are applicable far more broadly. In short, there are a group of …

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I know I’ve discussed this before, but it can’t be said enough: reuse of buildings is good for the natural environment as well as the cultural environment. Will Hurst at the Architects’ Journal (UK) recently published a manifesto called RetroFirst. I recommend reading the whole thing: the goals and ideas make perfect sense even though …

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Overlain Ghosts

That picture shows the north side wall of 109 Washington Street, which is one of the last remnants of Little Syria, the residential neighborhood at the foot of the lower west side. The neighborhood was doomed by commercial development, and was eaten away by big office buildings, the Battery garage, and the World Trade Center. …

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Inadvertent Structural Action

The title of this post is recycled from a talk I gave 16 years ago, “Inadvertent Structural Action in Traditional Buildings; or Why Hasn’t That Fallen Down Yet?” That talk was about how buildings that were constructed without structural design are often stronger than we think they are. The picture above is not that, but …

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