Old Building Demolition – Pros & Cons Of Tearing Down Historic Structures

Here is a guide on old building demolition.

An old building is most likely an eyesore especially when neglected or left in a state of disrepair. One of the most popular remedies used by many is having such buildings demolished.

Demolition Of Old Buildings & Historical Monuments

It’s obvious that bringing down an old building is necessary but is there any benefits?

To answer the question, we’ll be looking at the pros and cons of demoing an old building. This should enable you to determine if the personal or commercial demolition project you intend to embark on is worth the stress.

What’s an Old Building?

The term “old building” is quite vague and needs to be clearly defined.

An old building means different things to different people. For example, it may refer to a structure that has gone out of fashion.

In other words, such a structure isn’t quite modern, hence the need to replace it with something more attuned to the times. Also, a building can be said to be old when it fails a structural integrity test.

Here, such a building may be weak or unstable and unsafe for habitation. In this case, the structure needs to give way as it poses a great risk for occupants or people living around the area.

Another reason to have the term “old” clearly define is due to the presence of historic buildings.

Is there a difference between a historic building and an old building? Aren’t they all the same? While both are old, there’s a clear distinction.

Historic buildings are architectural masterpieces also considered works of art. These buildings need to be preserved due to their historical significance. On the other hand, an old building is simply an old building.

With this little introduction completed, it will be necessary to switch things up a bit by getting into the main topic of discussion.

Pros and Cons of Old Historic Building Demolition

Before a decision is made to demolish an old building, there have to be clear benefits or advantages to doing such.

Despite the advantages (however many), there are bound to be several disadvantages.

However, one thing is common with all old building demolition projects; the benefits must outweigh the disadvantages. When it’s the other way round, such a building is best preserved as is the case for historical buildings.

Pros of Demolishing an Old Building

When it comes to getting an old building out of the way, several benefits can be attributed or tied to such action.

Benefits include increasing a property’s value, putting the land to better use, eliminating the threat to safety, and putting an end to endless repairs that continue to take up resources.

There’s more! A clear benefit of old building demolition includes the removal of hazardous materials like asbestos. If the building is an eyesore, having it removed improves the condition or appeal of the area or landscape.

Commercial growth is another benefit of tearing down old buildings.

Old building demolition gives you access to certain suburbs or neighborhoods with little to no space for new development. A more detailed discussion of these points will clarify the pros of old building demolition.

  • Increasing a Property’s Value

One of the clear advantages of having an old building demolished is the need to increase a property’s value. An old dilapidated building sitting on a piece of land is an eyesore and decreases property value around the area.

Demoing such structures instantly improves property value.

  • Putting the Land to Better Use

Sometimes, it doesn’t matter whether an old building has historical value or not. Having it pulled down tends to be more advantageous when there’s a more beneficial use for such land to the community.

Here, a new house, local park, or community garden may occupy or replace the old structure.

  • Eliminating Threat to Safety

Old buildings will have to be demolished when there’s a clear threat to safety.

Certain old buildings increasingly become unstable and may crumble. A proactive step like demolition prevents or forestalls any danger that may be posed by the presence of the structure.

  • Putting a Halt to Endless Repairs

Sometimes, renovation or maintenance of an old building may become counterproductive when it becomes too frequent. Rather than channeling more resources and time than necessary into maintenance, it’s best to have the building demolished.

  • Removal of Hazardous Materials

Structures built before the 1980s are likely to contain hazardous materials like asbestos.

Due to the nature of these materials, having such old buildings professionally demolished limits exposure to these hazardous materials.

  • Improving the Landscape Appeal

Generally, when an old building that has been an eyesore is finally demolished, it instantly improves the landscape appeal of the area. Better still, the absence of such old, dilapidated buildings improves the property value around such areas.

  • Commercial Growth

Areas with the commercial appeal are actually planned and developed by constructing only commercially viable buildings. If there are old buildings that don’t serve such a purpose, they’re demolished to make way for better structures.

  • Access to Certain Desirable Suburbs or Neighborhoods

Certain suburbs or neighborhoods might be desirable to live in but have limited space.

For such, you may have to buy up space with an old building on it to repurpose such land.

Cons of Demolishing an Old Building

Despite the many benefits of demolishing an old building, there also abound several disadvantages for doing such. You may have to face a drawn-out battle (legal battles are likely).

Demoing a redeemable property may be considered unnecessary.

  • Drawn-Out Battles

Most times when old historical buildings are to be demolished, stiff opposition to such action often arises from interested parties. Also, obtaining approvals can prove to be a daunting task.

There may be special demolition requirements attached that need to be met.

  • Destroying a Piece of History

An old historical building is considered valuable. Pulling down such structure will be considered part of efforts to blot out history. Sadly, the area or space might serve a more beneficial purpose.

This conflict of interest between leaving old historical buildings untouched Vs constructing certain projects on the space is quite difficult to resolve.

The pros and cons of old building demolition are quite varied. Sometimes, there’s a clear need to have an old building demolished especially when it has to do with safety.

At other times, it isn’t so easy to decide especially when dealing with historical buildings.

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