Indicators for heritage buildings sustainability

Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
CESB 2013 PRAGUE - Central Europe Towards Sustainable Building 2013: Sustainable Building and Refurbishment for Next Generations, 2013, pp. 689 - 692
Issue Date:
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Heritage buildings preservation has become a major concern in our society. In the past, hundreds of heritage buildings were demolished due to high cost of adapting for new uses. The preservation of old historic buildings is in fact crucial as it not only represents our cultural identity and continuity, but also creates environmental benefits. Many of researches in the past emphasized the importance of environmental assessment methods to improve the environmental performance and building quality. Yet, for gauging heritage sustainability, the environmental assessment methods alone are insufficient. The social and economic aspects also play a role in heritage preservation. The heritage sustainability should thus embrace three pillars of sustainability, namely environmental, social and economic. This study attempts to develop a set of sustainability indicators for heritage buildings assessment. Fundamentally, sustainability indicators have emerged in the sectors like agro-ecosystems, bio-energy systems, corporate systems and urban sustainability. However, its evolution in the heritage sector has been relatively slow. Heritage needs its own tailor-made indicators. Based on the concept of sustainability, a multi-criteria assessment method and a set of indicators are developed to determine the level of sustainability of heritage buildings. A heritage building in Hong Kong will be selected as our case study to test the indicators. The outcomes will serve as a useful tool for policy making and assist government bodies in assessing the performance of heritage buildings with regard to the embedded objectives of building sustainability.
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