Saving Our Architectural Heritage: The Conservation of Historic Stone Structures

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N. S. Baer, R. Snethlage
Wiley, Apr 3, 1997 - Architecture - 448 pages
It has become obvious that public policy will play a critical role in determining what portion of our architectural heritage will be passed on to future generations and what portion will be lost to deterioration, development, and natural hazards. In developed nations, as much as 10% of the built environment is deemed of sufficient cultural and historic importance to be given local or national listing. At the international level, UNESCO maintains a World Heritage List that includes many stone monuments. While the past two decades have witnessed a growing body of research devoted to understanding the fundamental mechanisms of damage to stone and to developing strategies for the conservation of stone, virtually no research has been conducted on the quantification of the economic role of stone buildings and structures as well as the valuation of cultural property.
In order to introduce the tools and methods of economic analysis to the public policy debate on the preservation of cultural property, a multidisciplinary team of physical scientists worked with social scientists to explore how societal, economic, and ethical considerations might be integrated with technological options to lead to informed policy decisions. Recognizing that economic analyses must rest on firm technical data and sound conservation options, the state of our knowledge of mechanisms and rates of damage, the diagnosis of condition, and the evaluation of treatment options were subjected to critical review; special attention was given to the identification of promising, innovative areas of research.
This volume represents an important first step in rationalizing the decision-making process for the setting of public policy in the preservation of our architectural heritage. It will be of interest not only to those actively engaged in research and conservation on stone structures, but also to those concerned with urban planning, public policy, economic analysis, and environmental standards setting.
Goal of this Dahlem Workshop: to identify critical gaps in our knowledge of the deterioration mechanisms for treated and untreated historically important stone; to suggest innovative approaches to the study of deterioration mechanisms and novel remedial measures for treated and untreated historically important stone; and to address the socioeconomic factors that determine preservation actions for our architectural heritage.

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Moisture Cycles and Sandstone Degradation
Risk Factors and Their Management
Perspectives on Risks to Architectural Heritage

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