Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Title: Building conversion and rehabilitation
Authors: Farrugia, Martin (1985)
Keywords: Architecture -- Malta
Building -- Malta
Buildings -- Conservation and restoration (Malta)
Issue Date: 1985
Citation: Farrugia, M. (1985). Building conversion and rehabilitation (Bachelor's dissertation).
Abstract: The chequered history of the Maltese Islands has largely been determined by virtue of their unique geographical position. From the dawn of history Neolithic, Bronze Age, Punic, Greek, Roman, Arab, Spanish, Sicilian, South Italian and British cultures left their mark in Malta resulting in the accumulation of a surprisingly rich architectural heritage. Not many places present such a wide spectrum of architectural period and style, not is it easy to find such a concentration of historic buildings of quality as in this small island state in the heart of the Mediterranean. It is essential that we preserve this heritage by increasing the country's consciousness of the value of its historic assets in stone. Ever since the declaration of the European Architectural Heritage Year in 1975 and later with the European Campaign for Urban Renaissance in 1981 - 82, the conservation of our architectural heritage have been placed within a dynamic new context creating widespread interest in the architectural profession over recent years. A significant 'off-shoot' of this interest has been the rehabilitation and conversion of existing buildings to new uses, which has become a growing activity in the Western World. In Malta, although numerous conversion projects have been undertaken, we still have not recognized the full potential of re-using our Building Stock (historic and non-historic) which we still grossly undervalue as an asset. This dissertation is concerned with problems associated with the continuous re-use of the existing building stock and how Malta can benefit from it. It has became nut only a question of the restoration, conservation, and repair of our architectural heritage but also that of resolving the environmental/development crisis that looms ahead. The economic, social, architectural and environmental forces behind this phenomenon are investigated together with outline proposals and methods of how building conversion and rehabilitation programmes can be implemented. No systemised or general theories of conversion design analogous to those used in planning and design of new buildings have yet emerged and no attempt is made to propose any. The following is a synopsis of the main text The first chapter deals with why rehabilitation is so relevant to the 1980s, while the second chapter examines the structure of the existing building stock in Malta with particular reference to the ex-British Services property, featuring a selective account of the major conversions and re-use of ex-Military facilities during recent years. As Malta contains a vast stock of historic buildings and monuments it was deemed appropriate to dedicate a chapter to general schemes, policies and guidelines, connected with the rehabilitation of historic buildings and finding new uses for them. The maintenance and repair of such buildings, unfortunately, had to be omitted owning to space limitations of this dissertation, and also due to the specialized nature of such research that deserves a more exhaustive study. A detailed case study of Malta's foremost rehabilitation/conversion project, The Mediterranean Congress Centre, that won for Malta the coveted Europa Nostra Award in 1979, amply illustrated, is presented in chapter four. The fifth chapter is aimed at the authorities, the architect and the general public. The need for a town planning policy that embraces an integrated conservation development programme is commented on with special reference made to the 1969 Plan for Bologna, vis-a-vis Malta. The architect's new role and design problems related to conversion and re-use are outlined together with C.A.D. appraisal techniques and management of such projects. Finally the importance and necessity of healthy public participation is stressed with particular emphasis on youths and the importance of independent associations playing an active role in rehabilitation schemes and the town planning process. My ultimate aim is to enlighten and encourage my fellow students, architects, the authorities, the general public and persons within the building industry to seriously consider building conversion and rehabilitation, not only as a means of preserving the architectural physiognomy of this country, but also as an alternative building process to the current expansive building development, which one time or another must come to a halt, if we are to prevent an otherwise certain environmental disaster.
Description: B.E.&A.(HONS)
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - FacBen - 1970-2018
Dissertations - FacBenAUD - 1970-2015

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
  Restricted Access
8.82 MBAdobe PDFView/Open Request a copy

Items in OAR@UM are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.