How to deal with historic concrete repairs? – Evaluating and managing past repairs to exposed concrete buildings from the High Modern period

The project aims to evaluate previous repairs to fair-faced concrete buildings both from the persepective of building conservation as well as of building material sciences and to develop strategies on how to deal with them. Looking at previous repair procedures on these concrete buildings allows new insights into the paradigmatic way of construction of the High Modern Period. The project is based on a review of the historical development of concrete repair measures in Germany, focusing on the period between 1945 and 1990. In addition, major repair products (composition of material, application, manufacturer) and methods of building diagnosis are to be identified and evaluated. These findings are to be empirically verified by means of case studies and investigations on site. Together with the historical overview to be compiled, new conclusions will be made for future building conservation and repair of the very case studies in question. Finally, the question arises whether earlier efforts made for conservation and repair were related to the professional and public reception and valorization of concrete structures. Particularly in case of repair and conservation of concrete surfaces, the fundamental categories for building conservation dealing, "authenticiy" and "integrity", constitute two essential poles of discourse in this field.

Developing a scientifically sound, methodological guideline for an assessemnt of early concrete repair measures - and taking into account both viewpoints, building material sciences as well as building conservation - serves to establish practices and procedures for an appropriate treatment of our historical legacy. This will provide new impetus for international discussions on guidelines and regulations.

Research assistant: Elisabeth Hinz, Dipl.-Ing. Arch.

Co-operation partner:
Prof. Dr.-Ing. Christoph Dauberschmidt
Hochschule München, Fakultät für Bauingenieurwesen

Funded by German Research Foundation (DFG)

Duration: 02/2021 – 01/2024