Some changes in neighbourhoods and on the buildings are necessary due to new needs of the contemporary way of living, but they have to be directed and planed in dialogue with all participants to achieve positive effects for the people, heritage (designated or not) and the environment. Any interventions on buildings or in the public space of the neighbourhood should be carried out in such a way that the features of the original architecture and its distinctive character will be preserved. Also, the preservation of the neighbourhood identity to the maximum extent possible must be provided.
To deal with interventions in buildings or space correctly, we need to understand the architectural design of the building and the urban concept of the neighbourhood.
Therefore, it is necessary to identify all elements and features that define the visual character of the exterior and interior of the building before the planning of the renovation begins. Thus, the definition of all architectural elements that should be preserved to sustain the precious architectural character of the building. The loss or alteration of essential structural elements leads also to destroying the identity of the building.
Here are some examples of actions that can lead to unwanted changes that will notably damage the building’s and, consequently, the neighbourhood’s character: inappropriate repointing of the brickwork, changes to the window sash, introduction of the glassing on the balconies, painting previously unpainted concrete facade, implementation of external heat insulation to the structured brick or concrete facades, new choices of vivid facade colours, changes to the roof, changes to the setting around the building…
Some changes on the modern architecture are necessary due to new needs of the contemporary way of living, but they have to be directed and planed in dialogue with all participants to achieve positive effects for the people, heritage and the environment.