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Developing a maintenance-focussed conservation model: an Australian overview

Arturo Cruz (Faculty of Engineering, Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Brisbane, Australia)
Vaughan Coffey (Faculty of Engineering, Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Brisbane, Australia)
Tommy H.T. Chan (Faculty of Engineering, Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Brisbane, Australia)
Miljenka Perovic (Faculty of Engineering, Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Brisbane, Australia)

Journal of Cultural Heritage Management and Sustainable Development

ISSN: 2044-1266

Article publication date: 7 June 2021

134

Abstract

Purpose

This paper presents a conceptual design process for developing a maintenance-focused heritage conservation model. Currently, there are several intervention approaches that can be applied in conservation from reconstruction, restoration and repairs to a “do-nothing” approach. This paper examines whether a maintenance solution is more than just an option or a necessity. The aim of the paper is to study the challenges and opportunities when putting more emphasis on the maintenance approach in conservation.

Design/methodology/approach

This research was conducted in an Australian context, where many major buildings were constructed from the 19th and 20th centuries and are now categorised as “modern heritage”. three case studies were undertaken to inform this paper and others. In addition, 17 global heritage conservation experts were interviewed, and their responses were analysed. Also, comparative field observations and archival records were examined and used to develop the initial framework model. Finally, using focus group discussions amongst 7 experts, the framework was reviewed and formally validated in order to ensure the development of a useful model for use in devising an effective maintenance management plan and monitoring conditions in heritage buildings.

Findings

This paper supports others in a series that have already been accepted by this journal, focussing the research on heritage building conservation being conducted in Australia, the homeland of the Burra Charter. The other papers are entitled (1) model for the maintenance-focused heritage building conservation and (2) engineering in heritage conservation.

Originality/value

The paper examines contemporary issues in heritage building maintenance and conservation in Australia and focusses specifically on the lack of focus on maintenance as a conservation intervention for heritage buildings.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The author would like to thank the Australian Government for the Australian Postgraduate Award (APA) grants for funding the research and for Queensland University of Technology (QUT) Write-up Scholarship (WUS) grants for funding this article.

Citation

Cruz, A., Coffey, V., Chan, T.H.T. and Perovic, M. (2021), "Developing a maintenance-focussed conservation model: an Australian overview", Journal of Cultural Heritage Management and Sustainable Development, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/JCHMSD-02-2021-0030

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited

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