The Demolition Drama

The Demolition Drama

Why renovate instead of demolishing a building? Olaf Grawert, founder of HouseEurope!, explored all the implications of renovation in a lecture at Domus Academy. Read more!

Advocating to make building renovation more affordable, easy and a social matter.

During his lecture, Olaf Grawert, founder of HouseEurope!, professor at ETH Zurich and partner of B+, targeted specifically students from the Master in Urban Vision and Architectural Design, raising awareness on the matter of renovation over demolition.

Choosing to renovate buildings rather than demolish them and build a new offers a range of benefits that extend beyond “mere” raw materials saving.

Olaf Grawert presented several social, economic, environmental reasons for choosing renovation over demolition. Renovation saves jobs and small businesses by creating more local work, saving it from big multinational firms speculating on buildings. Renovation allows residents to not be displaced, maintaining local communities and neighborhoods. Renovation saves energy by reducing CO2 emissions and resources extractions. Finally, renovation saves tradition, history, and memories conveyed by buildings.

According to the ACE 2022 sector study, the ratio of existing to new buildings in Europe is 50:50.

The same ratio, in Italy, is 84:16. This is why Italy is taken as a case study within the European Green Deal renovation wave. Thanks to its understanding of heritage and architectural traditions, Italy is the leading country for funding directed to renovation of existing buildings.

Europe should learn from Italy and act to stop the massive demolishing and rebuilding of entire existing areas to make them more profitable.

HouseEurope! is a reality that advocates for EU-laws to make renovation more affordable easy and social. “Because the demolition of existing buildings is as outdated as food waste, fast fashion and single-use plastics”.

revive the event

Revive the talk following Olaf Grawert’s lecture to examine proposals and case studies examined with the contributions of Giancarlo Tancredi, Councillor for Urban Regeneration of Milan Municipality, Nicola Russi, Architect and Founder of Laboratorio Permanente, Ann Tuteur, Senior Advisor of Maroni & Associati, and moderated by Federica Sofia Zambeletti, Founder of KoozArch. Watch the video!

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