Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Vanity, ingenuity.

9 comments:

Rich Tee said...

They did that in Leeds a few years ago when renovating a shop building. Held the Victorian facade up whilst they gutted the place.

Lola said...

Engineers. What would we do without them?

The Stigler said...

The other thing is that sometimes the facade of a building is listed. You can't knock down the historically significant outside, but you can do what you like with what's behind it.

Bayard said...

It was quite common practice in the early C20th to put up a fairly anonymous steel frame building and tack a fancy stone facade onto it in a style much older, Classical or Gothic. So it sort of makes sense to keep the facade, which was the expensive bit, and redevelop the building behind it.

Steven_L said...

Aren't half of our city centres like this nowadays?

Mark Wadsworth said...

RT, which one? The old Lewis's?

L, we'd be buggered, obviously.

TS, exactly, the listing is the 'vanity' bit, that some govt appointees think they their aesthetic trumps everybody else's. That said, it was/is a very nice looking building. Nothing really special, but pleasing to the eye.

B, the facade is nice, but I don't know why they didn't take it apart and store it somewhere, then stick it back on when the real building is finished. They could do that with the leaning tower of Pisa as well.

SL, I dunno, once the buildings have been redone, you can no longer tell from the outside.

The Stigler said...

Mark,

If anything, it's probably the best listed building solution. Public likes nice looking frontages of shops, but likes modern interiors. best of both worlds...

Bayard said...

Mark, probably because it would have been more expensive. You would need real stonemasons to take it down and put it up, and there are not that many of them around, because, even though it's just a facade, it is load-bearing. All that steel is just stopping it toppling over, it's not hung from it, like a modern stone facade would be. Plus there is the difficulty of getting the stones apart without breaking them.

Mark Wadsworth said...

TS, yes, vanity and ingenuity; aesthetics and practicality.

B, aha, if it's cheaper doing it this way then that cheers me up no end.