Powell chronicles the history of adaptive reuse, the reasons for and the new uses. The main reason for reuse throughout history has been economics. Previously it was done “without regard for history or ‘character’.” This shifted in the late 20th century when adaptive reuse evolved more specifically into historic preservation. Powell shows that we now have shifted into a balance between historic and economic reasons for adaptive reuse. He feels that recent adaptive reuse projects have generated “some of the most innovative and intelligent work” in the architectural field. It is not just a sentimental or historic approach but a desire to create “new form out of old fabric.” Powell posits that “the rediscovery and reuse of old buildings and areas is more significant” for the twenty-first century urban life.
Author: Kenneth Powell