this is!

This is an example of what Rem Koolhaas is getting at in his article “Preservation is Overtaking Us”. The act of preservation did not start until well into the 19th century, beginning with embracing ancient artifacts and forms. Since then, what is being preserved is becoming more and more recent and increasingly unsubstantial. This Filene’s facade is undoubtedly a masterpiece of craft… but looking at the fine line of the corner, where the stone transitions to brick, it is evident that this facade was just conceived as a facade.

This building has been sitting in this current state for at least three years now. Filenes closed back in… like 2007, and the intent on saving it was to tear down the entire existing building, except for the facade. This is a very noble idea, and one that seems at first like the best solution for the reuse of this historic site. On further investigation of this case of preservation, one has to ask how this facade will stand on its own as a new building shell is fitted to it. It’s quite the process, but if there’s enough money to do it, then I say go for it! However, the recession hit during the demo/construction and well, this is what is there today. Maybe it is too much of an endeavor. It would have worked better if the building behind the facade was designed in such a way as to be permanent: well crafted and open to flexibility.