Facadectomy is Preservationists' Biggest Mistake

Considered a compromise between historic preservation and new development, preservationists now rue facadectomies.
February 3, 2004, 5am PST | Adam Weiss
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"The practice of using intricate old facades to mask new buildings has become a popular parlor trick for developers seeking to appease preservation-minded opponents and give their projects an instant patina."It seems like the logical path to take when trying to marry historic buildings with modern construction: keep the exterior, but update the interior. But now, preservationists feel that may not have been the right choice. Facadectomies can often leave a building mismatched; its floorplan completely different from the intent of the initial designer. " 'Sometimes it's better to have a new building,' Richard Tyler, the top commission staffer, conceded. 'Whatever the merits of a facadectomy, it's not preservation.' "

Thanks to Adam Weiss

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Published on Monday, February 2, 2004 in The Philadelphia Inquirer
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