Wei Zhang , pp. 70. DSN/School of Planning and Media Design, 2012.
With the rapid development of the city in recent years, many old factories were abandoned, or are underused. How to reuse and preserve the built heritage in the old factory, and combine them with local culture has become a very important issue in urban design. Reusing the old buildings while respecting and integrating local culture effectively can protect and preserve natural and cultural resources. It also gives the old building a new life, creating an image for the city. This is the so-called “minimal consumption of resources to get the maximum economic and social benefits" (Zhang, 2006).
The aim of this thesis is to discuss and propose ways of integrating local culture in the reconversion of old industrial areas. It begins by discussing key concepts used in the research, then goes to the current discussion of how to reuse built heritage in industrial areas against the background of urban development and abandoned industrial areas. The paper tries to sum up experiences from examples in Europe and China, complemented by the theoretical discussion on the key concepts. The experience learned from the examples will then be used in the case study for my design proposal.
To answer the research question, I conducted a literature review, and followed a case study and inductive approaches as the methods of this paper. I summarized five principles from the cases and used them in the design proposal. The principles are: 1) Using the original urban elements in the site; 2) Find the characteristics of the Buildings that can be used to promote local culture and enlarge them; 3) Geography features and vegetation; 4) Respect and protect the art activities of the city; 5) Give new functions to old buildings. Through the analysis of the cases in China and Europe and the practice of the analysis in the design proposal, this paper takes a first step in suggesting ways of how to integrate local culture into reusing of old buildings in industrial areas.