Case Studies

The above presented principles and possibilities of preserving authenticity of historical buildings during their rehabilitation are exemplified in case studies of structural strengthening. They are presented gradually, in increasing order depending on the degree of intervention.

Table 1 presents structural interventions for retrofitting the bearing capacity of a structure or structural element, preserving the entire original structure. The table includes cases of structural strengthening carried out on the masonry structure of Baroque buildings. The most common solution for improving the bearing capacity of the structural elements is to increase their transverse sections with a covering or to embed strengthening elements in a proper way. In these cases, it is very important to take into consideration the physical and chemical compatibility between the original and the strengthening material.

Table 2 includes examples of structural strengthening by modifying the original structure with compatible structural elements. Normally, they consist of additional elements that do not essentially alter the static behavior of the structure.

Often, metallic tie-rods shall provide for horizontal thrusts of arched and vaulted structures. These tie-roads can be of several types or in several positions (a, b, c), according to the structural form, height of supports, accessibility, aesthetic consideration etc.

Joining girder (ring beam) of reinforced concrete has to be added on the slabs level of the old masonry structures, in many cases.

The strengthening solution with tie-bar system can be used to reestablish the moment bearing capacity of large-spanned beams.

Table 3 contains examples of indirect strengthening of historical structures. In order to maintain the original structure or structural element, additional bearing elements are provided.

The basic idea is to maintain the original structure, but due to its weakness or very poor technical condition, to discharge it from an important part of the vertical load by an additional bearing system. The

Table 1. Strengthening, preserving the original structure.

Table 1. Strengthening, preserving the original structure.

Table 2. Strengthening, adding compatible structural elements.
Table 3. Indirect strengthening providing additional bearing structure.

Figure 4. New staircase - interior view.

Figure 3. New staircase - exterior view.

original structure shall be repaired or restored. From that point on, it has to carry only its own weight.

Another idea is that of using additional helping system in order to correct displacements or deflections that affect valuable elements of authenticity of the historical building.

Sometimes, the necessary functional improvement of an old building could imply adding new blocks to the building, preserving the structural and architectural authenticity of the original one.

For instance, in the case of the Palace of Justice in Odorheiu Secuiesc, Romania, built in 1835, belonging to the architectural heritage, an improvement of the circulation flux was necessary, responding to the current requirements concerning emergency exits (Bucur-Horvath 2007). A new staircase made of reinforced concrete and glass was added to the initial building (Figs 3-4). Placed in the inner courtyard, this very effective modern solution emphasizes the historical character of the old building.

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