Back in the day, houses were built to last hundreds of years. My family owned a 13 century farm house in Tuscany. It is still standing. The house that my father grew up in on the island of Rhodes dates back to the time of the Knights of St John. We estimate that the house he grew up in was built in the late 1400’s. It’s hard to wrap your mind around a house that old.

If the useful lifespan of a modern building is 70 years, you can expect that many of the buildings constructed in the 1950’s will be need to be redeveloped in the near future. Some of those buildings built in the 1960’s will need major retrofits or will need to be demolished. It all depends on how the buildings have been maintained. Even some 1970’s buildings are looking pretty tired at this point.

Building obsolescence does not appear in any of the analysis that I’m seeing reported in statistics. It’s almost impossible to get statistics on demolition permits. How much new product will be needed to replace existing buildings that are ready for retirement?


Host: Victor Menasce