Universidad Politécnica de Valencia (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2011 Proceedings
Publication year: 2011
Pages: 5362-5368
ISBN: 978-84-614-7423-3
ISSN: 2340-1079
Conference name: 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2011
Location: Valencia, Spain
The matter of Architectural Conservation is taught from 2006-2007 as a main matter of the 5th course of architectural studies of the Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura of the Universidad Politécnica of Valencia. Up to date, the architectural studies did not have any specific information about architectural conservation field, despite restoration was one of the capabilities supposed to any architect. Given the clear incongruency between education and professional capability in this field, the introduction of a new compulsory matter called Architectural Conservation was considered necessary already in the former academic curriculum plan of 2002 and it was confirmed in the new academic curriculum plan of 2010.

In the 40 assigned teaching hours, this matter tries to give the students the necessary capability in order to correctly develop a preliminary study of a historic building and organize critically and consciously an architectural restoration project, both absolutely necessary for their imminent professional career. For this reason, more than a half of these teaching hours are dedicated to develop methodological themes with a direct pragmatic application to a real case. This practical work proposed in the matter consists in the real development of the process of a preliminary study and restoration project of a historical building that the students themselves select from the real world. It is a real simulation of a preliminary study and project that the students, as future architects, will be able to have in their professional life. The election of the case, the direct learning on site directly applying the several type of studies and research methodologies and the critic approach to the project represent the three fundamental work phases that the students develop during the whole semester.

Therefore, first, the election of the case must take into account several factors that may allow the feasibility of this exercise and its optimal profit: the building must be small or medium, not in use, in an advanced state of degradation, possibly with structural problems, preferably with exposed or as less as possible coated walls, in need of a functional rehabilitation, etc. Secondly, the students elaborate a preliminary study necessary to know the building with the depth and necessary preciseness in order to be able to propose the required intervention. The preliminary study will include following aspects: general description of the building and its placing, historic description, metrical survey, study of materials and constructive techniques, architectural stratigraphic studies, study of the degradation phenomena and mechanisms, study of the structural problems. Last, the students propose a first idea of the restoration project, paying special attention to the intervention criteria and the development of some aspects of the restoration that may have emerged during the preliminary study phase.

The immediate applicability of the contents results in a very high percentage of success of approved students and very good marks in most of the cases. The students reach a very good proficiency that guarantees a sufficient level for their professional capability.
Architectural Conservation, Project, Learning, Real Case, Applicability.