Standards > Architectural Conservation Assessment

Stewardship > Skills
Records > Historic Structure ReportHistoric Furnishing ReportPreservation Plan

Condition Assessment > Management of Aging Buildings from "A Condition Assessment Process Developed for Use in the Private Sector" by Audet-Lapointe, Patrice. in Kelley, Stephen J. and Marshall, Philip C., editors Service life of rehabiltated buildings and other structures.STP 1098, Philadelphia: American Society for Testing and Materials, 1990.
Treatments > Understanding Old Buildings: The Process of Architectural Investigation.
McDonald, Travis C., Jr., Preservation Briefs 35, National Park Service

Definition

"Examination: All activities carried out to determine the structure, materials, relevant history and condition of a cultural property, including the extent of deterioration, alteration and loss. Examination also includes analyses and study of relevant material, as well as the study of relevant historical and contemporary information."

D. Glossary, Code of Ethics, Canadian Association for Conservation of Cultural Property and of the Canadian Association of Professional Conservators.

Scope

A detailed architectural conservation assessment is the first step to better understanding how the architectural style(s), history, and evolution relate to the:

  1. Value (Contextual)
  2. Features and Ensemble
  3. Context
  4. Significance
  5. Condition (by Systems, Space and Element)
    1. Monitoring
    2. Testing
  6. Integrity

And, next, how these can help develop long-term treatments for planning, fundraising, and preservation. An assessment may include several months of intermittent sites visit conducted by many staff members to thoroughly examine the structure. Work should be in tandem with site documentation by recording with field measured drawings, photographs and a database-formatted description. Later visits will help explore unanswered questions or areas, complete missing documentation and, field check the draft report.

An assessment of this nature will include detailed physical analysis, historical research, cost estimates, structural evaluation, code assessment, or investigation of potential hazardous materials. While other preservation criteria and general treatment recommendations may be referenced, specific conservation problems will still need to be evaluated in more depth. Detailed treatment recommendations may await preparation depending on priorities established as work is in progress. In-depth historical research, employing primary and secondary resources, is also included in this assessment. Much of this work can be coupled with information gathered for a Historic Structure Report and Historic Furnishing Plans.

And assessment is followed by the development of Treatment Recommendations.

Resources

Specifications for Fieldwork and Cultural Resource Assesment Reports, Kentucky Heritage Council (SHPO)

The Role of Analysis in the Conservation Process, Architectural Conservation Technology, Volume III, Historic Site Analysis, Heritage Conservation Program, Architectural and Engineering Service, Public Works Canada for Environment Canada; Canadian Heritage, Parks Canada, Ottawa, Ontario.

Secretary of Interior’s Standards and Guidelines for Identification (48 FR 44720-23)

 

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