Electronic Thesis/Dissertation


a salvage story Open Access

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Since 1947, designers in the United States have been working to preserve important historical buildings through preservation and conservation methods. Even so, the narrative of a building's complete past, its various uses and human interactions over time, is often lost to an ideal vision of what the space once was. As an alternative to these traditional methods, this thesis proposes the act of storytelling through the use of salvage and generates a series of guidelines to aid in this method of design. In order to create a list of effective guidelines for salvaging a historic space, case study buildings that have been preserved or adaptively reused, their methods of design and narrative were studied to determine successful and unsuccessful interventions, interviews with specialists in the field of preservation, architecture, and design were conducted to learn about how to safely and effectively handling historic architectural aspects that may have human health risks, and preservation techniques were analyzed based on writings by professionals and the Secretary of the Interior's guidelines. The knowledge attained from these studies is compiled into a series of guidelines for a proposed salvage design method. The abandoned Gunther Brewery in Baltimore, MD is redesigned as a part of a salvage story, acting as a vehicle for this design concept. Significant focus is placed on reusing found objects, materials, and traces of prior human activity within the existing space. The study also considers various methods of modern intervention in order to extend the brewery's narrative into the future as an arts center.

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