Re-functioning of Inter-War Modernism Buildings in Kaunas (Lithuania): the Aspect of Users’ Comfort
Keywords:heritage building, cultural heritage, re-functioning, sustainability, inter-war modernism, thermal comfort, Kaunas, Lithuania
This study is aimed at analysing the possibilities of contemporary use and re-functioning of Kaunas inter-war modernism buildings from the users’ comfort point of view. For the study, we have selected the building of the House of Commerce, Industry and Crafts designed in 1937 - 1939 by the well-known architect of this period V. Landsbergis-Zemkalnis that was continuously used and re-used for the administrative, office, and library purposes through its entire existence. In the frame of this research the analysis of literature, including the peculiarities of heritage building re-functioning from the users’ comfort point of view and the historical context of the case study building, and the field study including the photographical survey and the measurements of thermal conditions during warm and cold seasons were carried out. The research on site has shown the favourable conditions for the users according to the contemporary standards; however, the deterioration of some building’s structures threaten its heritage values and the use possibilities in the future. It can be concluded that the prestige generated by the heritage values and social significance of Kaunas inter-war modernism architecture together with the appropriate thermal conditions for the users encourage sustainable renovation and re-functioning of such buildings for the needs of contemporary society.