TUTCRIS - Tampereen teknillinen yliopisto


Building 'Post-Growth': Quantifying and Characterizing Resources in the Building Stock



KustantajaTampere University of Technology
ISBN (elektroninen)978-952-15-3817-9
ISBN (painettu)978-952-15-3812-4
TilaJulkaistu - 7 lokakuuta 2016
OKM-julkaisutyyppiG5 Artikkeliväitöskirja


NimiTampere University of Technology. Publication
ISSN (painettu)1459-2045


Building stocks will play growing roles in the extraction of secondary construction materials in future. Moreover, as there is a need to decouple buildings’ service provision from their material consumption, building stocks should, in fact, be considered not only as deposits of raw materials but also as reserves of space. Despite of their significance, these stocks tend neither to be well known nor systematically analysed. The end-of-life phase of buildings is especially poorly covered in research, although the aspects of buildings’ mortality and survival are fundamentally intertwined. The omission is highly problematic, because it precludes understanding the fundamental dynamics of the stock.
The current study is situated in Finland, where the basic composition of the stock is relatively well established in the Building and Dwelling Register, contrary to many other countries. Taking advantage of statistical description, this dissertation explores the geography and characteristics of obsolete parts of the Finnish building stock, that is, demolished and problematically vacant buildings. The dynamics, or the relations, within the stock are also considered on a very basic level, with the help of a simple correlation analysis. In order to exemplify refining the results of this kind of top-down research, the study then switches to a bottom-up approach and zooms into the more specific composition of a selected age-use cohort, the 1960–80s blocks of flats. The types and dimensions of the cohort’s components, or concrete panels, are inventoried, and the results are compared to the current requirements for dimensioning living spaces. Furthermore, the spatial configurations of flats, the service provided by these physical structures, are also investigated using graph theory informed typological methodology. The findings consist of a typology of flats characteristic to the cohort. Lastly, the extents of the reserves in the entire stock of demolished buildings, the stock of problematically vacant residential buildings and the exemplary cohort (its existing, vacant and demolished parts) are quantified and proportioned to each other and new construction, inter alia.
By highlighting the magnitudes of secondary deposits of materials, components and spaces, this dissertation suggests that public policy should start paying more attention to the building stock and the potentials embedded within it. Even though an unambiguous relation between vacancy and demolition was not identified, the key finding from the resource perspective is that significant amounts of obsolete buildings are geographically concentrated on cities. In order to practice sustainable policies on the building stock, planners and decision-makers should be better aware of these reserves and acknowledge their adaptation and modification capacities.

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