WIT Press

Military Buildings: From Being Abandoned To Reuse


Free (open access)

Paper DOI






Page Range

17 - 27




1200 kb


M. P. Gatti, G. Cacciaguerra


Recovery issues and typological and technological issues appear intrinsically connected on both conceptual and operational level and, as far as non-monumental “civilian” historic buildings are concerned, have been the subject of research for some time. However, publications on non-monumental “military” type historical buildings are less frequent. This undoubtedly derives from the understandable reserve surrounding the construction of groups of building and other structures for the armed forces. These nevertheless represent a vast heritage to be re-introduced onto a circuit of “civilian” use, given the reconfiguration of defence models and consequent abandonment of a large number of structures. The military complexes and single buildings constructed from the end of the 19th century are located in both natural settings and the urban fabric, where they now occupy central positions and therefore make an extremely attractive proposition for restoration and re-functionalization. What documentary historical value in terms of typology and construction technique can be attributed to this particular type of military building? What problems and strategies can be studied to re-introduce them correctly onto the circuit of use? We will try and answer these questions by analysing the military structures in the city of Trento, built by first the Hapsburgs, then the Italian governments and now largely abandoned.


recycle, military architecture, conservation, restoration