I picked up a copy of American Bungalow Magazine at Newsbeat today, and was fairly inspired by an article by Jane Powell, entitled "Confessions of a Radical Preservationist." She proposed the creation of an organization called HALF: Historic Architecture Liberation Front, founded on the following principles:
1. All historic buildings are created equal, and endowed by their creators with the inalienable right to remain standing, be properly maintained and not be sacrificed on a whim, be that the whim of an individual, a government, an institution, or a corporation.
2. To paraphrase a Buddhist motto: No matter how innumerable historic buildings are, we vow to save them all.
3. Historic buildings should not be sacrificed in the name of "economic development," which is almost always code for "profit" or "power."
4. "Smart growth" that demolishes historic buildings and replaces them with inappropriately dense "infill" is not smart at all and will eventually be as discredited as the "urban renewal" of the 1960s.
5. There is no essential difference whatsoever between building more density in urban cores (at the expense of historic buildigns) and paving farmland. Both are driven solely by the pursuit of profit.
6. Historic buildings are not to blame for whatever social ills may be associated with them. The building did not choose to become a drug house or to have irresponsible owners.
7. 99% of contemporary architecture sucks.
8. There is no bigger scam than window replacement.
9. NIMBY really stands for Not Intimidated Much By Yelling.