Deep Adaptive Reuse

A response to the 21st-century urban challenges






Deep adaptation, Adaptive reuse, Urban heritage, Case study, Acre


The world is undergoing dramatic change in its social and physical environments, resulting in cultural confrontation and conflict. Rapid urban growth, displacement, and gentrification increase urban pressure while jeopardising social cohesion, multicultural values, and local economies. In addition, environmental factors associated with climate change challenge how our cities respond and adapt, prompting the need for urban centre regeneration to confront the urban century challenges (Sassen, 2011). However, adaptation to these changes is also a source of conflict, as urban policies lack citizen engagement in the redefinition of public space, resulting in more disagreement and inefficient use of resources.

One way to respond to this ongoing crisis is adaptive reuse, repurposing an underused system for a new use. This process can enhance positive environmental impacts, encourage social and participatory processes, and promote economic dynamism through culture. However, the success of such an intervention will depend on the underlying approach.

The paper aims to explore how Jem Bendell’s ambitious four-pronged Deep Adaptation strategy (Bendell, 2018) combined with the cultural resilience approach can result in adaptive reuse processes that act as development catalysers and peace-building mechanisms.

How to Cite

Yarza Pérez, A. J. (2022). Deep Adaptive Reuse: A response to the 21st-century urban challenges. SPOOL, 9(2), 25–40. https://doi.org/10.47982/spool.2022.2.02





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