Critical success factors of adapting heritage buildings: an exploratory study
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Purpose – The loss of heritage buildings should be avoided as they provide a tangible example of a period of life that is now gone. Adaptive re-use enables buildings to be given a second life, enabling them to live on when they may have been previously underutilized. Changing the capacity, function or performance of underutilized buildings for a different purpose, or to suit new conditions, or making use of pre-existing structural elements has become necessary to preserve heritage buildings. The purpose of this paper is to identify the critical success factors (CSF) for the adaptive re-use of heritage buildings. Design/methodology/approach – Identification of CSF for adaptive re-use can provide asset owners, developers and key stakeholders with the knowledge needed to ensure a project is delivered successfully. Due to a lack of research in the area of CSF for heritage buildings, an exploratory approach was undertaken. Semi-structured interviews were undertaken with stakeholders to solicit their views as to CSFs that lead to the successful adaption of all heritage buildings that had been subjected to re-use program in Perth, Western Australia, were examined. Findings – Four CSFs were identified: research; matching function; function; and design and minimal change. It is proffered that by addressing the CSFs issues associated with latent conditions, building layout and commercial risk and uncertainty can be addressed. Yet, the Building Code of Australia will continue to be the most significant issue for owners/developers and project teams who embrace an adaptive re-use project. Originality/value – To date there has been limited research undertaken with regard to determining the CSF for heritage buildings that have been subjected to adaptive re-use. The work presented in this paper identifies the key CSFs that emerged from the stock of heritage building’s in Perth, WA. Further research is required to determine the validity of the CSFs, however, those identified provide a benchmark for further studies in this fertile area.
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