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Pairing the house with the workplace boasts a long tradition. In the Middle Ages, locating the studio or the space destined to trade on the ground floor and the dwelling upstairs was recurrent and characteristic of the city centres in Western Europe.

On the ephemerality of housing. Arapu House

Walking through Bucharest, our attention is often drawn by the unusual and radiant figures of different houses or the nature embracing them. Lying fascinated, we gratefully accept their perfection and wish to discover the secret of their charm. The forms catching our attention in the first place usually have an intimate connection to our experiences and memories.
When we notice a house, we instinctively feel that it is because it revealed a „spark” of something essential related to the structure of our own nature.


Restaurant Caru’ cu bere (The Beer Cart), on 5 Stavropoleos Street, is one of Bucharest’s most famous landmarks. A well-known, frequently visited and highly appreciated place, not just by Bucharest inhabitants, but by people across the country and foreigners, Caru’ cu bere has been operating without interruption for almost 120 years. This continuity, beneficial to the city and the building alike, is primarily due to its owner who built and, subsequently, expanded the building hosting the restaurant. The history of Caru cu bere is therefore organically linked to the impressive history of the Mircea family, who, through its various members, ensured ongoing occupancy of the building on Stavropoleos street The same family manages the building today.


LIVE & WORK, A NEW PARADIGM  OF HOUSING? text: Mihaela PELTEACU © Ene+Ene Arhitectură Click For Romanian Version Far from being a particular type, the dwellings associating professional life with family life have developed naturally throughout history, representing rather space combination and organization strategies essential to life than a typology as such. There are a […]

How Petrila turned into a Planet. From activism to a culturally-based heritage regeneration programme

Like the entire Jiu Valley region and most postindustrial towns, Petrila is currently undergoing a process of recuperating its reason for being. Beyond resignation or predestination, two attitudes chiefly pervading the collective discourse, the town keeps on slowly shrinking as a result of a decrease in the economic activities originally determining its birth. Given this specific postindustrial context seen from a socio-economic and cultural perspective, the interventions on industrial heritage are closely linked to assuming a general programme of regeneration through culture.


According to a broader definition, heritage includes all of the existing buildings – and urban and/or rural complexes, irrespective of their age: in other words, the architectural heritage also includes buildings (complexes) that are currently being built and which might be classified, in time, as heritage items. Undoubtedly, the actual buildings will always remain the most significant structures for a specific era or society; however, a broader and much more comprehensive notion of architectural heritage with a much more comprehensive meaning would also include in the architectural heritage the various categories of documents regarding constructions, which may be found in various archives – to be dealt with below -, as well as the publications on architecture and the city and the more or less specialised libraries in this field.

The Centre for Vernacular Architecture Studies in Dealu Frumos. A living example of heritage

The Centre for Vernacular Architecture Studies (CVAS) in Dealu Frumos could be a landmark.

It is quite an innovative initiative of „Ion Mincu” University of Architecture and Urban Planning in Bucharest dating from 2003 but also a prospective solution to the university-research-practice relationship.
The active reconversion of the Evangelical Fortress in Dealu Frumos-Schönberg into a research centre is alone an illustration of implementing the restoration and conservation principles found in the Venice Charter (1966). This is the place for various workshops, exhibitions, „live-studios” and participatory projects for the local community based on national and international partnerships.

Bucium Summer University. A model for the regeneration of rural cultural heritage

Bucium Summer University (UdV) for monument and site regeneration under the high patronage of The Romanian Academy is a project initiated and coordinated by RPER Association – Rencontres du Patrimoine Europe Roumanie1. The project aims at providing a safeguarding model for the cultural heritage of the smallest habitation nucleus, the Romanian village, with a focus on the municipality of Bucium in Alba County, thus offering an applicable alternative for local development, in contrast with the destructive mining projects threatening the villages of Bucium, Roşia Montană and their surroundings.

A mode(l) for the revitalization of European-rooted cultural heritage: Ville de Laval, Québec, Canada

Laval is nowadays the third most important city in the French province of Québec and is ranked thirteenth in Canada from a demographic point of view, with 430.000 inhabitants. Its insular territory, formerly known as Île Jésus, situated in the north-western part of the Island of Montréal and covering a surface of 246 square kilometres, is the second largest island in the Hochelaga Archipelago4, after the Island of Montréal.

HerculaneProject. Our Story

(…)HerculaneProject. How it all started
It was during a short visit to Herculane and under the impression caused by the current state of pronounced degradation affecting the built heritage of great architectural value that we decided to get involved and do something to prevent the history, culture, myths and tradition of this place from being lost forever. Fascinated by the beauty of the place and its power of regeneration throughout the centuries, we wanted to make known this heritage by promoting and valorising it.
Hence, we can say that our project for Herculane emerged naturally, from our desire to change the compromised destiny of the place.

On the Heritage of Roșia Montană, with Hope

(…)Roșia Montană boasts a wealth of valuable items coming together to form an outstanding site, a fabulous cultural landscape. The Apuseni Mountains area also boasts a number of other historical mining sites, none of which has preserved, however, such a rich collection of important vestiges, dating as far back as the prehistoric times, and going all the way to the modern and contemporary era and uniquely illustrating the evolution of mining.(…)


A retrospective glimpse at the situation of public monuments in Bucharest over the past 100 years reveals an uncanny reality most often defined by uncertainty and/or improvisation. This is generally due to a pair of reasons acting separately or jointly, depending on the case. First, it is the sometimes brutal influence and discretionary manifestation of politics, not only in the case of authoritarian or totalitarian governments but also when it comes to those allegedly democratic, which radically come forward in times of political regime change and profoundly affect the recent evolution of the Romanian society. On the other hand, most often than not, the precarious location of some monuments is also the result of the vague urban development solutions for representative public spaces in Bucharest which all lack a coherently defined configuration and are not prepared to appropriately incorporate important monuments.

Historical allotments and proximity communities

The current project is part of a broader initiative, conceived and implemented starting with 2012 and initially focusing on the history of the Communal Society for Cheap Housing (1910-1948) and the Building Office (1930-1949). According to the acts of establishment, both institutions aimed at building houses for the working class and for the poor population of the capital in general. First of all, we sought to understand the history of the building process and how the dwellings were assigned to the beneficiaries, as well as the conditionings generating the adoption of these measures, the way in which the two institutions elaborated their operative policy and the extent in which the state took full responsibility for these steps as part of the housing policies implemented during the first half of the 20th century.

Functional Mix in Inter-War Bucharest. Union Building

Since they were located in the central city area, these buildings met all modern economic, social and cultural requirements, from the highly effective use of the land plot and modern technical equipment to a new way of living and working and a new urban image.
The structure of these buildings was generally designed so as to ensure the prestige of the investing companies, and also, to a large extent, to provide safe economic efficiency.

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