Page\Park outline challenges of conserving modern buildings
November 1 2011
First and not least of these is public mistrust, as Ranald MacInnes, Head of Heritage Management at Historic Scotland, explained in his foreward; “It takes a great deal of effort to persuade people that Modernism could and should be preserved. The Modernism that developed in Glasgow shared the international aspiration of its forbears and consequently lacked a particular connection to place.”
Nevertheless the organisation has gone on to bestow A listed status on a raft of Modernist buildings from the Lanark County buildings to Edinburgh University Library.
Explaining some of the practical difficulties presented by such buildings, specifically Gillespie Kidd & Coia’s St Margaret’s Church, Clydebank, Ian Hamilton, Page\Park’s head of conservation architecture, said: “This single-storey church has external walls of facing brick and a free-spanning space frame structure supporting a flat roof - which was originally finished in felt. The fabric was in poor condition and leaking.”
“The aim of the project was to improve the rainwater disposal from the roof and ensure better maintenance in the future. A key challenge was to find a way to drain the large expanse of roof, which had limited outlets, within the constraints of its category B listed status.”
Page\Park are currently in process of drafting up refurbishment plans for Edinburgh University's David Hulme tower - part of a wider estate of buildings around the city's George Square.
The practice will also be hosting a day-long seminar day looking into the development of concrete construction in Scotland, its historical importance, and its repair and conservation at their offices on November 4.
Upgrading the 1970s structure of St Margaret's to 21st century thermal standards presented quite a challenge
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