UBC Graduate Research

Reclaiming History : Preservation of the everyday Mavis, Derek 2020-12

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Reclaiming HistoryPreservation of the everydayDerek MavisBA Hons Carleton University, 2017Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Architecture in The Faculty of Graduate Studies, School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, Architecture ProgramThena Tak, Joanne Gates, Blair Satterfield, Travis Hanks© December 2020Preservation has historically privileged the monumental. The concept of historical preservation grew from political ambitions to claim legitimacy and a desire to promote an idealized city. The historical provenance of a building became the only determining factor when deciding whether or not to preserve the buildings. A Buildings value, however, is much more complicated than it’s singular historical provenance. A building is a place of interaction with humans. We form memories with buildings, and imprint ourselves onto the buildings. Architecture can be read as a physical copy of the story of humanity. But as buildings decay and are lost, chapters of humanity are lost with them, unless they are preserved. Shifting how we view preservation and what we value as historically important can change what buildings we preserve, and how we preserve them. Looking towards the everyday life of buildings and people as equally important as the broader cultural significance avoids the everyday becoming lost to the monumental. Preservation of the everyday, while contrary to the monumental, preserves what the monumental tries to invoke.AbstractiTable of Contents List of FiguresAbstract........................................................................................... iList of Figures............................................................................... iiiAcknowledgment.......................................................................... viDedication..................................................................................... viiPreface........................................................................................... 11Introduction.................................................................................. 13Nostalgia for the Past................................................................... 18Facadism and Vancouver............................................................ 24New and Old................................................................................ 30Reclaiming History..................................................................... 34Market Alley Images................................................................... 111End notes.................................................................................... 132Figure 1 ..................Site map of Vancouver with three alley sitesFigure 2 .................Site map of Vancouver with three alley sitesFigure 3 ..................................................Site map of Market AlleyFigure 4 ......................................Location of intervention in alleyFigure 5 ......................................................Callout of interventionFigure 6 .............................................Before condition in the alleyFigure 7 ..........................................After drawing with brick wallFigure 8 ...............................................Brick wall partially rotatedFigure 9 ......................................................Brick wall fully rotatedFigure 10 ..............................................................Wall caster detailFigure 11 ................................................................Wall pivot detailFigure 12 ................................................................Wall shelf detailFigure 13 ..........................................Image with brick wall closedFigure 14 ............................................Image with brick wall openFigure 15 .....................................Location of intervention in alleyFigure 16 ....................................................Callout of interventionFigure 17 ........................................Site as gambling hall in 1920’sFigure 18 ..............................................Site as restaurant in 1970’sFigure 19 .................................Site as current condition in 2020’sFigure 20 ................................................Intervention as food cartAll images and illustrations are by the authoriiiiiFigure 41 ...........Canopy fully deployed covering alley from rainFigure 42 ..................................Detail of rain water managementFigure 43 ....................................Detail of clothes line attachmentFigure 44 .............................Detail of canopy location differencesFigure 45 ......................................................Image of interventionFigure 46 ..................................Site of Hiding Space interventionFigure 47 .........................................Site of Takeover interventionFigure 48 ........................................Site of Rest Stop interventionFigure 49 .........................................Site of Covering interventionFigure 50 .........................................View down alley looking eastFigure 51 .................................................................Graffiti in alleyFigure 51 .................................................................Graffiti in alleyFigure 53 .........................................View down alley looking eastFigure 54 ...............View down alley from Takeover interventionFigure 55 .........................................................End of Market AlleyFigure 21 ............................................Intervention as market stallFigure 22 ............................................Intervention as clothes lineFigure 23 ............................................Intervention as garden plotFigure 24 ........................................................Detail of garden plotFigure 25 .....................................................Detail of water bucketFigure 26 ........................................Detail of window/gutter/roofFigure 27 ......................Image of the intervention as garden plotFigure 28 .......................Location of the intervention in the alleyFigure 29 .............................................Callout of the interventionFigure 30 ...........................................Before condition of the alleyFigure 31 ..................................................Intervention in the alleyFigure 32 .................................................Detail of door and rampFigure 33 ...............................................Detail of takeout windowFigure 34 .................................................Detail of door and rampFigure 35 ...............................................Image of the interventionFigure 36 .......................Location of the intervention in the alleyFigure 37 ..............................................Callout of the interventionFigure 38 ...........................................Before condition in the alleyFigure 39 .............................................................Canopy retractedFigure 40 ................................Canopy partially out shading alleyvivDedicationThis project is dedicated to the everyday people forgotten by historyAcknowledgmentI’d like to thank my chair Thena Tak for all her help and guidance through this project and throughout my time at school. I could not have done this without you.Thank you to my committee members Joanne Gates, who was invaluable to my work and showed me how to consider and appreciate the details. Blair Satterfield for continually pushing the ideas and all your weird and wonderful references, and Travis Hanks for all your knowledge and insight that was instrumental to this projects success. vi viiPrefaceThe built environment that we know today is comprised of a vast spectrum of buildings. Anything from size, function, style, age, material, and purpose changes from building to building. There only remains one constant between any buildings, no matter their properties. Humans. Humans have used them, inhabited them, modified them to suit their needs, and have formed connections with them. It is this connection, be it through memories or some other tangible relationship to the building, that humans try hold on to for as long as possible. Whether it is a childhood home, a place of work, where an important event took place, or simply a form found to be particularly beautiful, we always try to preserve it for ourselves, and if possible, preserve it for others in hopes that they can form a connection of their own. Throughout time humans have been preserving building in one form or another. But relative to the built environment, we have recently begun to strictly quantify how and what we preserve, and ever so slowly try to qualify why.  When a building, monument, site, or artifact is selected for preservation the governing body of that object has determined that it is significant in some way and that it then warrants preservation. That object then becomes fixed in time. Through the act of preservation the object is stopped from forming new relationships and changing and is only meant to elicit the memories from a previous time. Through this act the building is severed from its ability to be used and modified. 11viiiWhen this happens to a building it ceases to be a building and becomes an object to be viewed only for what it has been, and not what it could be. For a building to be truly preserved and not be severed into an object for reverence, a new approach needs to be taken. The building needs to be preserved while still being allowed to interact with humanity. “Tradition counts for nothing when it is no longer contested and modified. A culture that is merely preserved is no culture at all…A culture which takes place only in museums is already exhausted. A culture of commemoration is a cemetery. No cultural object can retain its power when there are no new eyes to see it.”1 IntroductionThe year is 1964. A group of dignitaries from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) gather in Venice to discuss new legislation to protect heritage buildings, monuments and sites around the globe. This meeting is the most recent attempt to manage the preservation and conservation efforts done under the guidance of UNESCO. The result of the meeting is the creation of the ‘Venice Charter’. This charter outlines the rules for conservation and preservation practices that will be enforced by UNESCO and the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) that would be founded the following year in Warsaw Poland.2   The creation of the Venice Charter marks a culmination of previous meetings, charters, and legislations by UNESCO and various European countries to realize an initiative towards international heritage. The Venice charter outlined the continuing realization that important cultural monuments and sites need to be preserved for future generations.3 The formation of this document codifies the idea that heritage belongs to everyone and should be preserved for the sake of humanity. The charter also recognizes that while there needs to be an international effort for the preservation and conservation of heritage, there also needs to be localized national efforts made.12 13 “The 1964 Charter of Venice emphasized there was no single universal framework of restoration theory or political-economic organization and that each country had to develop conservation policies suited to its own conditions.”4   The charter created a new foundation from which ICOMOS (and UNESCO) could use to push the conservation movement further than it had ever done before. ICOMOS comprised of national committees that allowed the participating countries to work together on the issues brought by conservation. One issue that was discussed early on at the general assembly in Oxford in 1969 was on cultural tourism. As heritage began to become internationalized, the tourism industry began to surge. Old town centers around the globe began to have an influx of tourists wanting to see this heritage. Aided by UNESCOS designation of ‘World Heritage Sites’ cities and towns began to restore their perceived heritage according to the rules and regulations put in place by UNESCO and ICOMOS. Following these regulations provided both an access to specialized knowledge, and if successful, a heritage designation from UNESCO. Local economies began to boom with the tourist trade and wanted to preserve as much heritage as possible.  One problem with the way in which UNESCO functioned on an international scale was with what they considered heritage worth preserving. In tracking this, we must first go back to the French Revolution. After the revolution overthrew the monarchy, the French people were in a crisis about what their heritage was. The act of revolutionizing brings forward an idea that you are different than what came previously. In cultural and ideological forms. The French people needed something as a base from which they could stand on and present their new identity. The crisis became what to save and what were reminders of the monarchy and needed to be destroyed.5 What came out of the French Revolution would be the first laws governing what qualifies as national heritage and guidelines for how to save it. More important than the laws governing the preservation efforts were the definitions and terms of ‘National Heritage’ and ‘Historic Monument’. Previously, anything that was thought to be worthy of preservation was done so under the term of ‘antiquity’. Older Roman, Greek, and Renaissance monuments were preserved. But only the larger monumental objects were saved. The Colosseum, the Parthenon, and the Palazzo del Te were saved, but the smaller houses and buildings of all antiquity were not seen as important. It wasn’t until the French Revolution, where there was a crisis to save anything culturally relevant that the scope widened to more recent works.6  14 15 Continuing through history the scope of what was considered culturally important began to widen, but only in timescale. The time period that a building was from was getting closer and closer to the present time. The building or monument no longer had to be considered ‘antique’, it just had to be considered culturally important. But the buildings and monuments selected and targeted were still based on a hierarchy of importance. Large public buildings and grand residences were still chosen over smaller seemingly inconsequential buildings. Especially those outside of the major cities. It is this baggage of very select important buildings and monuments being chosen for preservation that UNESCO carried with it. As the tourist industry boomed countries would only preserve their most important and well known heritage artifacts. As UNESCO and ICOMOS were mainly concerned with the most important sites, it left a gap for the local governments to fill in what they believed was their own ‘Cultural Heritage’.  It is within this gap that countries, and recently UNESCO began to focus on more. Illustrated in figure 1 are both important charters and regulations related to preservation, but also the amount of buildings, sites, monuments, and artifacts that they encompassed within them. As more legislation is passed more objects are considered for preservation to fill in this gap. ‘Lesser stature’ buildings are being chosen for preservation. Civic buildings, private residences, and industrial plants are all beginning to be preserved because each are reflecting the past of the city, and the city is desiring to hold on to it. More recently in 2003 UNESCO passed legislation protecting ‘intangible heritage’.7 We are at the point now where almost anything can be declared heritage and be preserved. Now very easily a building can be built, and then preserved, within a human lifetime. As said provocatively by Rem Koolhass “Maybe we can be the first to actually experience the moment that preservation is no longer a retroactive activity but becomes a prospective activity”.8 If we are to continue this trend and preserve a continually greater amount of buildings, we should not make ourselves bound by the traditional modes of preservation outlined in the Venice Charter and what objects they encompass. With the inclusion of intangible heritage and the connections we form with buildings, a new method of preservation will need to be used to capture the ‘why’ of what we preserve. Perhaps we should look back to the French revolutionaries and use the past as a stepping stone to continually push us into the future, while not being suffocated, or overtaken, by the past. 16 17Nostalgia for the Past Nostalgia has pervaded human history and provides us with a romanticized version of the past. In modern times, nostalgia may be derided for a lack of ambition towards the future. Especially with the advents of new technologies and ever pressing need to create a better world for future generations, nostalgia is omnipotent. Phrases such as “back in my day”, “when I was younger”, “in the Golden Age”, or “in the good ol’ days” always are measuring our current time with a perceived past. Whether good or bad, this measuring of the past provides a nostalgic feeling that many strive to get. Connected to the built environment, nostalgia can become a strong force when decisions of preservation need to be made. “Historic homes and the residential historic districts they reside in necessitate an everyday corporeal attunement to the present needs of things past…Bodily attentiveness to what feels right often supersedes architectural and historical accuracy.”9   The connections and memories that we form with our built environment compel us to preserve certain objects. In the 16th 17th and 18th centuries the nostalgia most present, at least in the Western perspective, was for classical heritage. The classical era became a standard that future empires and civilizations strived to achieve. Classicism influenced many aspects of later civilizations. The Renaissance being the first to revive the classical style of architecture and to preserve certain Roman and Greek buildings and temples. One of the most notable preservations done is to the Pantheon.10 The Pantheon was converted into a Christian church. By taking control of the pantheon, the Papacy was able to subsume the power of Rome into its narrative of creating a second Rome. While this move may not have been pure nostalgia, they used the known memories and cultural significance of what the Pantheon represented to further their narrative of a new culture. The British Empire and Napoleon would later use this method of exploitation for their own cultural gain. Through the use of classical architecture and the adoption of classical heritage by English high society, they sought to present themselves as living in the ‘Golden Age’ of Greece and Rome. This is illustrated through the education system at the time where the classics were a large, important, portion of their education.11 As the perpetuation of the classics continued, it perpetuated preservation for the sake of nostalgia. In order for the elites and Intelligentsia of the time to continue advancing their culture at the time, they needed to rely on the publics nostalgia for the greatness of Rome, of which the ruling class could provide. The nostalgia for the past became used a propaganda to sell the present time. It was used to support a national identity that was not specifically related to what was being preserved. 18 19 Nostalgia for the classical period has continued on into the modern day. During and after World War II Athens, and Greece, had to once again raise itself out of destruction. As the Greek government was rebuilding itself after the war it relied on the nostalgia and the identity of Classical Athens. The Acropolis, the agora, and various temples scattered around Attica survived and became propaganda for the rebuilding of Athens.12 Relying on the past to rebuild Greece was a very effective use of nostalgia. With the rebuilding of Athens, the tourist industry boomed. Tourism became a majority in Greece’s economy. Pairing with the timing of the new legislations put forward by UNESCO the nationalization of Greece’s heritage was a natural progression. But the propagandization of Athens did not come without any backlash. In 1944 Yorgos Vassilio Makris wrote “To set as our aim the blowing up of ancient monuments and the promotion of propaganda against them. Our first act of destruction shall be the Parthenon, which is literally suffocating us.”13 Makris was the chief organizer in the UASA (Union of Aesthetic Saboteurs of Antiquities) and opposed to the return to a classical Athens. Makris was not anti-Greek but an activist wanting to see a new culture develop in Greece that wasn’t related to the past.14 As history will tell us, Makris did not blow up the Parthenon, nor in fact did his proclamation cause much of a stir. But he did raise a point that continues to manifest itself within Athens today. In a city that has literally built upon its rich heritage, any developments that are made are subject to oversight. If any artifacts are discovered during excavation, they must be fully documented and put on display for the public.15  Either in a museum or incorporated into the site and building itself. This effect can be seen in the New Acropolis Museum by Bernard Tschumi. Leading to the front entrance is a glass floor covering ruins of column bases and foundations of previous buildings. The amount of heritage that exists can quickly overcome the city as it tries to find a new modern identity.  In 2007 there was a biennial in Athens titled ‘Destroy Athens’. The biennial worked under a narrative of conflict, dead ends, violence, and cruelty.16 The biennial was meant to critique the cultural policies of Greece and present a new narrative for Athens. Separated into seven episodes, referencing the seven days it took God to create earth in the book of Genesis, the biennial would create a new Athens. Works in the biennial referenced Greek protests and riots, moments of liberation from Nazi German occupation, and classical philosophers. The opposition to the reverence of the Acropolis and the Parthenon was shaping a narrative that the history should be told and remembered, but did not have to be continually manifested through the preservation of monuments. Preservation could be done in ways that did not 20 21rely on the propagandization of cultural history.Humans have taken to nostalgia as a gateway to preservation and to create a dogma for cultural history. Nostalgia brings a sense of belonging and authority to the question of why we choose to preserve an object. It always provides a sense of comfort. If the current situation is changing because of a revolution, expansion of an empire, rebuilding after a war, nostalgia gives a stable platform to build from. When the future is uncertain nostalgia can have a calming effect, and by preserving the buildings and monuments that are associated with the nostalgia it becomes a retreat for those able to afford it. In the 2006 film “Children of Men” the world has entered a dystopian future where there is a disease rendering humans sterile and no children will be born. Humanity is confronted with the knowledge that it will die out. Set in London England, there is a scene where the main character, Theo, travels to the Battersea power station, which is controlled by the government. Seen in the background and around the power station are cultural artifacts preserved by the government. The statue of David, paintings by Picasso, the inflatable pig from Pink Floyd. In a context of human extinction and chaos in the world important cultural artifacts are still being preserved. Is it in hopes that there is a cure for the illness and humanity will recover, or is it because of the nostalgic comfort that the objects provide? If it is the former, then it could be theorized that once humanity can restore itself and rebuild the government wants known cultural artifacts to use as a base for restarting. If it is the latter, then nostalgia is present for the sake of enjoyment. No matter what happens in the future the past will always be enjoyed, and the Parthenon will always be on the Acropolis. Nostalgia can hinder the progress of culture by always trying to preserve the past, no matter how distant. To be able to preserve the important cultural objects and still progress culture and society, history should not be treated as precious. We should not be afraid to modify, and at times destroy, the physical objects of our nostalgia.22 23Facadism and Vancouver  Mediating between the old and new, nostalgia and the future, is the present. Our present is the culmination of centuries of nostalgia for the better times and the increased fascination with our past. We feel that as much as we need to progress, we still need to preserve as much of our past as possible. Through legislations by UNESCO, national, and local governments we are preserving a vast array of buildings, monuments, sites, and artifacts. We are then using these preserved objects to advertise our history and selling it for tourism. Billboards have become ubiquitous in large scale advertising. Large signs posted along the sides of roads and through cities advertise for businesses and local attractions. So to do the facades of heritage buildings. A façade of a building, its most recognizable feature, is used to advertise the local heritage. Put on postcards, travel websites, and magazines, the facades of buildings are used to generate the nostalgia and public image a city wants to sell. From strips of historic downtown main streets to residential neighbourhoods, the public face of the heritage is preserved. When select buildings are preserved the façade becomes a main focus for the preservation. It must be saved at all costs. Facadism is the obsession with the appearance of heritage, not the substance of heritage. New buildings can be built behind, around, or into the façade, but the original façade must remain visible and intact. What this creates can become absurd. “The worst and most common abuse is a shallow show window front addition slapped onto an old façade like a thick-crusted pie in the face. Enough of the original building rises behind these flimsy one-story additions that the whole ludicrous composition is fully exposed, like a man with his pants down.”17   Following this route into the absurd we get buildings that have replaced the original building while wearing a mask (the façade) of the old building. The absurdity comes not just from the aesthetics and debatable beauty of the, but from the hypocrisy of the preservation. Are we preserving the building itself, or the image of the building? If we truly wanted to preserve the building we would preserve the entire building, and not tack the façade onto a new building. Arthur Cotton Moore discusses this in one of his writings ‘The power of preservation”. Moore talks about preservation in the American context and how it has been overtaken by absurdity. Through the use of neon signs, frankensteining together heritage buildings with new buildings, and use of the term ‘adaptive abuse’, Moore paints a picture of heritage and preservation being used as a novelty, and not because we are interested in 24 25saving the past.18 That is, “The architecture of the absurd is the by-product of a complete fascination with the present and a total lack of interest in the past.”19 Cities are fascinated with how to preserve the appearance of heritage to provide a source of nostalgia while they try to adapt to the present.  In Vancouver, British Columbia this effect can be seen in Gastown and in the original residential neighbourhoods, such as West Point Grey. Two projects in Gastown are currently under development where the facades of the old buildings are being ‘preserved’ and applied to new buildings. The first is 33 West Cordova by Henriquez Partners Architects. The second is 325 Carrall Street by Human Studio. 33 West Cordova was the site of two hotels build in the early 1900’s. The Stanley and New Frontier Hotel. The hotels housed occupants until 2001 though many different renovations and property owners. In 2003 the city of Vancouver purchased the property to convert into housing for both the regular market and low income housing. In 2017 Henriquez Partners proposed a design that utilized the existing facades, with store fronts on street level, and inset multi-story housing complexes rising out from the top of the façade.20 This was done in accordance to Vancouver’s heritage bylaw and the HA-2 zoning district. While the project continues to satisfy all regulations pertaining to the preservation of Vancouver’s heritage, the project exemplifies the absurdity of facadism. A test that can be done to determine if a project is true heritage preservation or facadism is separating the two components. If the heritage façade is taken away from the project, does the project still fit within the context? If we take the heritage façade away from the 33 West Cordova project the multi-story towers do not look any different. They could be built in any site and not look out of context. It is only the heritage façade that gives the project context in Gastown. With this result the project could be called an abject of facadism. If the façade was taken away and the Multi-story towers look out of context, or could not be built in any other site, the project could be determined to be closer to pure preservation. If the project does not need the heritage façade to function, then it is not preservation, it is an advertisement of heritage.  325 Carrall Street is very similar in origins to the 33 West Cordova project. Originally built on the site in 1896 was the Louvre Saloon. The site changed hands many times and witnessed many different programs. The current redevelopment that is being proposed are micro-housing units and retail space at street level.21 The proposed development does not push the height restriction too far and has only a modest 7 story addition, with two additional stories above the existing building. If we apply the above test to this project, it 26 27fares much better. Once the heritage façade is taken away, the project is still responding to its surrounding context. Certain cornice details and the window openings and sizes respect the heritage of the site. The addition of the two modern style levels atop the heritage building preserve the function of the building, while not detracting from the appearance. The addition uses the heritage to help anchor itself into the new context of Gastown, a gentrified neighbourhood. The project may not be a perfect preservation of the existing building, but it uses the heritage and the new to complement each other, and not solely be an advertisement of what existed previously.  In West Point Grey heritage preservation and facadism takes on a different approach. In the residential neighbourhood, single family homes are coveted and treated with respect by their owners. Houses can be found dating back to the beginnings of Vancouver and are viewed as much a part of Vancouver’s heritage as Gastown. Care and attention is placed on manicured lawns and hedges and the heritage homes are not altered. This preservation is not facadism where the front is kept and the rest of the building is torn down. The heritage homes are preserved in the traditional method of restoration and conservation. As there are some houses that are being torn down and new, modern, houses being built in their place, there are houses that are being preserved because of their perceived nostalgic heritage value. While the preservation of the house it not an issue to facadism, the nature of these neighbourhoods being a ‘hedge city’ are. The main point being if there is a hedge blocking the view of the house, why preserve it? The idea of facadism is that it projects, displays, advertises cultural heritage to the public. But if the view is blocked by a hedge why do we bother to preserve the house? The answer could lie in the nostalgic realm. The families that have lived in the houses do not want them to disappear, and locals from Vancouver do not want the older heritage parts to disappear for fear of losing the identity of the neighbourhood. It is nostalgia that can subvert the idea of needing to view what is preserved. It is more important to know it exists than to see it exist.   These two ideas, facadism and hidden preservation, are at odds with each other. One is meant to be seen and exploited, one is only meant to exist. It is perhaps these two contradicting ideas behind the question of why we preserve that a new form of preservation could be derived from. A new method could consist of providing the familiar façade of heritage, the 325 Carrall Street project, combined with the comfort of blind nostalgia, housing being preserved behind hedges. This new method for preservation can provide a new mode for the development of cultures while still maintaining their heritage. It could allow for the Parthenon to be blown up.28 29New and Old The issue with achieving a successful form of preservation is combining the old with the new. Where success can be measured through how well both parts are integrated and how well they complement each other. Methods such as the facadism test can be used to help determine this. Public reception is also a large contributor to the success of a preservation effort. The public is the intended audience. If the public are opposed to the preservation effort it can be concluded that it was unsuccessful. However sometimes public opinion needs to be put aside in order to achieve the goals of preservation. In Athens there are parts of the public that were, and are, opposed to the current preservation methods of the city. The city has however put aside those complaints to achieve their goal of promoting and selling an ancient Athens to tourists. Conversely, if the public wishes to preserve certain objects the city or government might choose to put aside the complaints in favour of the vision they see for the city. In Montreal leading up to the 1976 Olympic Games Melvin Charney created an installation as part of the ‘Corridart’ exhibition. The installation was a plywood façade of a Victorian house on a vacant lot.22 The lot was vacant because the city had been demolishing the heritage houses as part of a redevelopment plan.23 The city did not want the press that the installation would garner so in the night they tore the work down. If government is opposed to preserving some objects, and the public others, then it is always difficult to determine what to preserve, and how successful the preservation effort was.  In finding a new method for preservation, perhaps a new standard for what should be preserved needs to be found. Current legislation such as the ‘UNESCO Convention to Safeguard Intangible Heritage’ can help. This legislation opens up the constraints for what might be considered heritage. It can cover a broad spectrum of objects for inclusion. A better approach though, might be to include everything. As noted with nostalgia the objects that we, as humans, feel we need to preserve is personal. If we dispatch with history as something to hold precious, history becomes liberated and so do the objects labeled as historic. We can feel more comfortable with changing and modifying something that is no longer considered to be a precious object. We then focus on the historical substance contained within this object. Nostalgia, memories, events, interactions, and knowledge can all be valid targets of preservation, not simply the physical object itself. It is at this point that it would be remiss not to mention the hackneyed Jingu Shrine in Ise Japan. It is, of course, the temple that is reconstructed every 20 years. The temple is reconstructed to preserve the traditions and crafts of their culture and to pass it on to future generations.24 The Japanese do not faun over the ancient timbers as historical object. They are concerned with what the collection of timbers mean when they are assembles. There is also another temple in Japan, Kinkau-ji, that has burned down twice and been rebuilt. 30 31Author Douglas Adams visited the temple and after speaking with locals about the temple was surprised to learn about its provenance.“I had to admit to myself that this [regarding the temple as original] was in fact a perfectly rational point of view, it merely started from an unexpected premise. The idea of the building, the intention of it, its design, are all immutable and are the essence of the building. The wood of which the design is constructed decays and is replaced when necessary. To be overly concerned with the original materials, which are merely sentimental souvenirs of the past, is to fail to see the living building itself.”25  There is also a new brand of preservation emerging referenced as ‘Experimental Preservation’. Experimental Preservation uses non-traditional techniques and methods for preservation. The practitioners of Experimental Preservation also do not follow conventional reasoning for what needs to be preserved. One of the main proponents of this new theory is Jorge Otero-Pailos. Known for work such as ‘The Ethics of Dust’ Jorge Otero-Pailos and his colleagues embrace this new form of preservation to push the field of preservation in a new direction. They look for objects to preserve themselves and break from the traditional heritage monuments and prescribes by governments and organizations.26 They will also look for and use new technologies to preserve objects in different ways. Adam Lowe is pioneering a form of ‘non-contact’ preservation that digitizes the object.27 This separates the object from its physical reality and allows for the material version to decay, or be used for other purposes. By combining new technologies and methods with old practices and notions towards preservation, preservationists have the ability to become more radial with what they can achieve. New and old can coexist when one is not trying to overtake the other and are treated as equals.32 33Reclaiming History As humans continue to interact with buildings, so too will humans want to preserve those buildings. We form memories about the buildings, we create connections to them, and we interact with them in almost every aspect of our lives. For hundreds of years humans have been developing preservation practices to retain the cultural heritage of objects. From the first legislations passed by the French Revolutionaries to the most recent legislations by world organizations and governments we have been trying to define our heritage and qualify it for preservation.   Nostalgia has been used to reason why we are preserving these cultural heritage objects. They have importance within the world and they can be used and leveraged for profit and gain. The nostalgia of history gives comfort in an uncertain future. Closely tying an object to history gives it provenance and holds it on a pedestal to be revered. Through the act of preservation, when the whole building cannot be saved, or not needed, the façade of the building become the key to unlocking its cultural heritage potential. By preserving the façade all of the requirements for preservation can be met. The use of the façade commodifies the heritage. Turning it from a cultural building into a representation of itself. The facades become dead buildings propped up with new developments.   New and old are able to coexist when they are held as equals. The cultural history of the object is the most important aspect for preservation. The physical object should not be seen as so precious that it cannot be modified, or in some cases, destroyed. By combining new methods of preservation and creating a new approach towards preservation, we will not be overtaken by the past. Vancouver was chosen as the site for testing this new alternative approach to preservation. Within the last half century Vancouver has boomed and is rapidly redeveloping it’s landscape. As a result of the redevelopment the city of Vancouver is preserving it’s most historical important areas, as is tradition with any other city as it evolves and changes.  What follows is a series of interventions designed to preserve a part of the everyday history of Vancouver. In searching for sources of the historical everyday in Vancouver, the old alleyways and neighbourhoods provided a rich history. Of the sites researched, Market Alley was chosen as the site for the interventions. A site where early Chinese immigrants settled in Vancouver, Market Alley is rich in everyday history that has been overlooked in favour of the monumental. 34 35Beatty St.E Hastings St.E Pender St.Prior St.Union St.Carrall St.Columbia St.Main St.Robson St.Cambie St.Seymour St.Howe St.W Georgia St.Dunsmuir St.Downtown CoreDowntown East SideStrathconaGastownFalse CreekVancouver HarbourBeatty LaneMarket AlleyHogan’s AlleyBeatty St.E Hastings St.E Pender St.Prior St.Union St.Carrall St.Columbia St.Main St.Robson St.Cambie St.Seymour St.Howe St.W Georgia St.Dunsmuir St.Downtown CoreDowntown East SideStrathconaGastownFalse CreekVancouver HarbourBeatty LaneMarket AlleyHogan’s Alley36 37Figure 1 Figure 238 39Figure 3Intervention 1Hiding SpaceLocated in the west block of the alley, Hiding Space is situated next to an original address of 34 Market Alley, which used to be a laundromat. Taking over a rarely used garage, hiding space creates a flexible space where the everyday people of the alley can modify and adapt the space to meet their needs, while echoing the alleys history as a place of refuge and opportunity.The brick wall that replaced the garage door is pushed open or closed to reveal a space inside, and to provide a backdrop for an outdoor space. Small market stalls could be set up, provide shelter from driving wind, and provide seclusion from prying eyes.40 41Figure 4 Figure 542 43Figure 6 Figure 744 45Figure 8 Figure 946 47Figure 10 Figure 1148 49Figure 1250 51Figure 1352 53Figure 14Intervention 2Take overMoving east down the alley, near the entrance off of Columbia street, Takeover uses the original building of a gambling hall and the Green Door restaurant as it’s site.By examining the archeology of the old brick facade, the new bricks that had been used to infill the old windows and doors have been removed and suspended above the alley. By suspending the bricks above the alley, a new interstitial space is created between th alley proper and the facade. This is an active reclamation of the space for the people to inhabit. The space becomes an extension of what it used to be in the past. 54 55Figure 15 Figure 1656 57Figure 1758 59Figure 1860 61Figure 1962 63Figure 2064 65Figure 2166 67Figure 2268 69Figure 2370 71Figure 2472 73Figure 2574 Figure 26 7576 77Figure 27Intervention 3Rest StopLocated further east down the alley, Rest Stop spans the back of three buildings, centering on the back door of a current restaurant, Jade Dynasty. With the back door of the restaurant open, a take out window and eating hall on the right, and an open seating space on the left, Rest Stop provides food and drinks for the people of the alley. Bringing picnic benches and outdoor furniture to it, the people can now sit and rest comfortably in the alley, away from the busyness of the main streets. 78 79Figure 28 Figure 2980 81Figure 3082 83Figure 3184 85Figure 3286 87Figure 3388 89Figure 3490 91Figure 35Intervention 4CoveringThe final intervention in the alley is located at the end of he eastern block, where the alley splits off to the main streets. It is in this quiet end of the alley that covering is situated. Covering is a set of three bays of retractable canvas canopies that can span the entire width of the alley. Operated by a simple pull on the clothes line and pulleys, the canvas can be operated and moved across the alley. Covering allows the people to make full use of the width of the alley. Only the sides of the alley were ever used before, and the two sides of the alley would never be connected. 92 93Figure 36 Figure 3794 95Figure 3896 97Figure 3998 99Figure 40100 101Figure 41102 103Figure 42104 105Figure 43106 107Figure 44108 109Figure 45Market Alley imagesThe following images document the condition of the alley as it stood from September to December of 2020.110 111112 113Figure 46114 115Figure 47116 117Figure 48118 119Figure 49120 121Figure 50122 123Figure 51124 125Figure 52126 127Figure 53128 129Figure 54130 131Figure 55Endnotes1	 Mark	fisher,	“Coffee	Bars	and	Internment	Camps,”	Published	January	26,	2007,	http://k-punk.abstractdynamics.org/archives/008956.html2	 Miles	Glendinning,	The	Conservation	Movement:	A	history	of 	architectural	preservation	(New	York:	Routledge,	2013),	382.3	 Ibid,	398.4	 Ibid,	382.5	 Ibid,	67.6	 Ibid,	68.7	 “Legislation,”	UNESCO	and	Intangible	Cultural	Haritage,	Accessed	April	21,	2020,	https://ich.unesco.org/en/legislation-000348	 Rem	Koolhaas,	Jorge	Otero-Pailos,	and	Jordan	Carver,	Preservation	is	Overtaking	Us	(New	York:	ColumbiaBooks	on	Architecture	and	the	City,	2016),	15-16.9	 Jennifer	Kitson,	Kevin	McHugh,	“Historic	enchantments	–	materializing	nostalgia,”	Cultural	Geographies	22,	no.	3	(2015):	488.10	 Arnold	Nesseirath,	“Nine	Impressessions	of 	the	Pantheon	in	the	Renaissance,”	last	modified	2019,	https://erenow.net/ancient/the-pantheon-from-antiquity-to-the-present/9.php11	 Flann	Campbell,	“Latin	and	the	Elite	Tradition	in	Education,”	The	British	Journal	of 	Sociology	19,	no.	3	(1968):	311.12	 George	Kafka,	“The	burden	of 	antiquity:	veneration	of 	the	past	becomes	stasis,”	last	modified	January	17,	2020,	https://www.architectural-review.com/essays/the-burden-of-antiquity-veneration-of-the-past-becomes-stasis/10045987.article13	 Marina	Fokidis,	“Destroy	Athens?,”	accessed	on	February	16,	2020,	https://www.manifestajournal.org/issues/i-forgot-remember-forget/destroy-athens#14	 Ibid15	 George	Kafka,	“The	burden	of 	antiquity:	veneration	of 	the	past	becomes	stasis,”	last	modified	January	17,	2020,	https://www.architectural-review.com/essays/the-burden-of-antiquity-veneration-of-the-past-becomes-stasis/10045987.article16	 Marina	Fokidis,	“Destroy	Athens?,”	accessed	on	February	16,	2020,	https://www.manifestajournal.org/issues/i-forgot-remember-forget/destroy-athens#17	 Arthur	Cotton	Moore,	The	Powers	of 	Preservation:	New	Life	for	Urban	Historic	Places	(New	York:	McGraw-Hill,	1998),	88.18	 Ibid,	87-95.19	 Inid,	90.20	 Peter	Meiszner,	“Dramatically	reworked	proposal	for	33	West	Cordova	in	Gastown,”	October	19,	2017,	https://urbanyvr.com/bc-housing-westbank-33-west-cordova21	 “325	Carrall	Street	Small	Rental,”	accessed	on	April	23,	2020,	https://www.humanstudio.ca/work/2019/10/7/vaf954k8vjvrwbkqu6y2xt9r89spp922	 “1976:	Making	History,”	accessed	on	April	23,	2020,	https://150ans150oeuvres.uqam.ca/en/artwork/1976-the-houses-of-sherbrooke-street-by-melvin-charney/#description23	 Ibid132 13324	 Junko	Edahiro,	“Rebuilding	every	20	years	renders	sanctuaries	eternal	–	the	Sengu	Ceremony	at	Jingu	Shrine	in	Ise,”	August	2013,	https://www.japanfs.org/en/news/archives/news_id034293.html25	 Douglas	Adams	and	Mark	Carwardine,	Last	Chance	to	See	(New	York:	Ballantine	Books,	1992)26	 Jorge	Otero-Pailos,	Erik	Langdalen,	Thordis	Arrhenius,	Experimental	Preservation	(Zurich:	Lars	Muller	Publishers,	2016),	16.27	 Ibid,	15.134

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