Sustainability - Building Re-use
As sustainable design solutions become a larger part of the building and construction industry, so to structural engineers have had to adapt to become more than just "new" or "new to existing" designers. With the inclusion of life cycle modelling within the feasibility assessment of projects, building re-use continues to become more viable not only environmentally but also commercially.
It is a common misconception that once a building exceeds its original 50+ year design life the structure is beyond usefulness. Structures invariably contain life and usefulness well beyond their design life. Utilising the inherent strength of an existing structure can provide significant economic and environmental benefits.
Based on past experience with these types of projects the cost of demolition and reconstruction can far exceed the cost of re-engineering an existing building for re-use.