Topic | Dirty Laundry

peerpres-finalDirty Laundry / An adaptive reuse of a Textile Mill

Keywords: Industrial heritage, urban fabric, cultural space, landmark, canvas, textile mills, Bombay, revitalization, paradigm shift, adaptable design, preservation, brownfield redevelopment.

Abstract: The abandoned textile mills of Bombay, sitting vacant across the heart of the city occupying valuable real estate, are often contaminated with chemicals that leach into water tables. In addition to this, they create voids in the urban fabric that impede development and regeneration around them. These industrial buildings serve an important role in urban life as the former engines of production and economic centers of communities, but when their doors are shut, they are left to decay. They are not preserved because they lack the architectural, historical and symbolic significance that society requires to retain them. Reused instead can provides value to the urban fabric and communities around them. The opportunity to reuse obsolete facilities in the urban core supports sustainability and smart growth initiatives designed to focus redevelopment in inner cities in an effort to decrease urban sprawl. As an alternative to our ever-increasing “throw-away society”, adaptive reuse offers an approach for a sustainable building site. Every aspect of this research project aims to raise awareness and actively portray the potential of sustainable practice in adaptive reuse as a viable and socially responsible alternative to demolition and replacement.

Case Studies:

  • Andel’s Hotel Lódz, Poland
  • Küppersmühle museum of modern art, Germany
  • Rotterman carpenter’s workshop, Estonia
  • Rock Hill’s textile mill, Massachusetts, USA 
  • Pheonix Mills, Mumbai, India
  • Love Grove arts and crafts centre, Mumbai, India

by Laasyapriya Malladi


Topic | Saving Face

 Saving Face: Façadism as an Adaptive Reuse strategy?

Keywords: Heritage, Historic Preservation, Adaptive Reuse, Modern Context

Abstract: In the present day, when the strain on infrastructure is apparent and resources are dwindling, the concept of reuse has become quintessential. This is pertinent for land as a resource as well. With the world and its need of growing manifold, the accommodation of new space  has to be catered to. Empty plots of land in the urban fabric are becoming difficult to find – either for financial reasons or for the sheer lack thereof. It is therefore important to reuse and recycle existing vacant buildings. Many often these buildings are historic in nature. The grand scale of these historic structures within an urban setting allow for interventions and adaptations of the spaces. In such cases, what comes to the forefront is the preservation of the buildings history. Over centuries, the concept of preservation has been debated upon. The paper will look at how architects have dealt with the concept of historic preservation in the contemporary context. Through case studies of interventions in the last 25 years, observations can be made about the changing concept of adapting structures by retaining the historic outer shell and reevaluating the interior spaces for modern uses. Often referred to as “Facadism”, it balances the need for historic restoration and a radical change in the idea of preservation. A quote from Ada Louise Huxtable (Lessons in Healing the City’s Scars) forms the foundation of this writing:

“What we need is continuity . . . historic preservation is not sentimentality but a psychological necessity. We must learn to cherish history and to preserve worthy old buildings . . . we must learn how to preserve them, not as pathetic museum pieces, but by giving them new uses.”

Las Arenas de Barcelona

Case Studies:

  • Las Arenas, Barcelona
  • The Old US Mint, San Francisco
  • The Gare d’Orsay Museum, Paris
  •  The Old Reichstag, Berlin
  • Ferry Building Market Place, San Francisco
  • The Old Post Office, Washington DC
by Mansi Tewari