A Comparative Study of How to Renovate Historical Fabrics in the UK, France, the USA and Iran (Shiraz)

  •  Tahereh Nasr    


Restoration and renovation of the historical fabric of towns is one of the methods of intervention in towns with historical fabrics and old buildings that means continuous and conscious act for modernization, prevention from erosion and wear, longevity of historical buildings and fabrics of the towns, which are carried out aiming at a new function as appropriate to the needs of the daily life.

The record of restoration of the historical fabric of the towns in advanced counties is about two countries old, but the restoration and improvement of the historical fabric of towns separately and independent from historical buildings as a live, dynamic urban element was never paid attention by congresses and scientific centers before the Second World War. After the Second World War, restoration and reconstruction was paid attention again and was discussed in academic centers. That was while construction operations were under way in most European towns rapidly and intensively and no enough time was there for their study. The present article, while reviewing the world laws and enactments on urban restoration, has a look on different kinds of renovation in urban fabrics. What is important is the economic feasibility of renovation in the areas under study.

The present article is an effort towards review of the literature on restoration and innovation of historical urban fabrics based on the universal activities.

The purpose of this study is explanation of the components being paid attention in renovation of the old urban fabrics.

An analytical – comparative review of the experience gained in developed countries, on the one hand, and developing countries, on the other hand, could provide a guide toward development of effective solutions for renovation of historical spaces in towns. Analysis and examination of the process of the influence of modern western architectural, urban development and urban restoration on the modern Iranian architecture and urban development are among the achievements of such a study.

The research methodology, considering exploration of the form of the Iranian town is descriptive – analytical and the method of collecting data is field work and documentation

"The content structure of the study" is supported by the process of determination and introduction of efficient policies and strategies in traditional and historical fabrics. Strategies such as creation of new economic demands, environmental improvements, preservation and safeguarding of the historical nature of the quarter with physical restoration, development of criteria for functional design and renovation are among other notable subjects in this project.

The findings of the study show that, the historical neighborhoods of towns usually serve as autonomous functional areas, and, therefore, paying attention to them must be made in the context and the general fabric of the town and the relevant districts. Renovation, which is nothing but returning vitality and activity to the areas, is a dynamic, powerful process. Considering the above- mentioned items, one could say that the process has had different degrees in different areas. A successful renovation must show itself, in physical, economic and social aspects as well.

The results show the physical improvement of the town by paying attention to the physical components of the urban indentify. Also, one should attend to creation of cognitive and aesthetic values aiming at providing the readability and upgrading the mental image of the town when innovating the old fabrics.

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