Building sustainability: human aspects and territorial differences of agricultural buildings reused in tourism
Keywords:rural, construction technology, material, vernacular, rural tourism, Sweden
This study examined how operators perceive the advantages and disadvantages of traditional agricultural buildings (ABs) used in tourism and whether territorial differences and the human aspect had an influence on the approaches of operators in the sustainable reuse of ABs from a building-related perspective. A combined questionnaire-based survey and comparative case study revealed that operators are clearly aware of the advantages and disadvantages when reusing ABs in tourism. Although sustainability was found to be a subjective term for many, building materials and construction technology were chosen according to sustainability principles. Education, personal background, upbringing and interests, work experience and world view of the owner were major factors in how building-related sustainability was approached. Drastic changes while reusing ABs, where absolutely necessary (utilities, etc.), were acceptable to operators provided attempts were made to fulfill modernisation and official requirements in a creative and well-conceived way. This prevented loss of value and building information and ensured sustainable reuse. Territorial differences emerged, mainly resulting from differences in the local society created by environmental and economic factors.
Keywords: rural, construction technology, material, vernacular, rural tourism, Sweden