Thursday, January 13

First Huffington Post Blog: Out with the Old?

It was quite a rush to see my first Huffington Post blog post, Out With the Old?, go live yesterday. Writing for the Huffington Post has long been a dream of mine, and I am thrilled to now be a part of that community. A very special thank you to my friend Shawn Henderson for believing in my writing and making the introduction.

In the past few years there have been numerous depressing examples of demolition of historic buildings that continue to remind me that buildings and monuments are not only historically important to a region and culture, but they serve as visible symbols linking us to our past.

Most recently, book The Ruins of Detroit by French photographers Yves Marchand and Romain Meffre has haunted my thoughts. You can read my take on preservation and adaptive reuse of buildings here.

Photo by Marchand and Meffre: The ballroom of the 15-floor art-deco Lee Plaza Hotel in Detroit, Michigan. The apartment building and hotel was built in 1929 and has been derelict since the early 1990s.

16 comments:

Fauxology said...

Your article was thought-provoking and haunting. Thank you for sharing this -- I'll be sharing your link as well. (...and congratulations!)

pve design said...

Extraordinary article Ronda. The images are haunting.
Shawn was so right to believe in you and your writing along with your appreciation for honoring the old.
pve

My Dog-Eared Pages said...

I will be sharing your link as well. Well-written and yes, haunting. We must do all we can to preserve our history.

VictoriaArt said...

Ronda, I was so touched by your article in the Huffington Post today!
Being a German living in the US for the last 17 years I have often wondered about the situation of old abandoned buildings, the somewhat lack of awareness and interest.
I had no idea of the immensity of it all!
I understand that economic aspects play a huge role in preservation and if there is no money, then there will be simply no way to fix it! But I do not understand that as a State there is no way of supporting such enterprises and to preserve the wonderful architectural heritage of this country.
It would be wonderful to turn things around, especially in Detroit and create opportunities out of those abandoned places, to bring a new interest and life back into the city, it's rich history and hopefully a brighter future.

The Devoted Classicist said...

What a waste of resources and a loss if beauty. Hopefully, Detroit can eventually make a comeback. But how many American cities are close to the same thing happening, an abandonment of downtown in favor of sprawling featureless suburbs?

quintessence said...

This was a really terrific piece on a meaningful topic. Historic preservation is so important and doesn't always get the attention it deserves. Such a sad state of affairs that sorely needs to be addressed. A wonderful first entry with hopefully more to come.

Bonnie said...

What a great post and article! The places must have been so magnificent long ago. Congratulations on your wonderful opportunity with the Huffington Post! I'll be sure to check out the The Ruins of Detroit book and your future articles too.

I am also sad to see beautiful old homes and buildings left to ruin that were once so full of life. I wrote a similar piece on my blog a while back trying to express my nostalgic feelings for preserving the past and old architecture while still moving ahead with new creative designs too. I'm glad so glad others feel the same about trying to preserve the old architecture. :)

http://loveyourplace.blogspot.com/2010/04/architecture-our-couture-structure.html

The enchanted home said...

What a well written and informative, thorough piece of wrtitten work this is! Thanks and congrats..very exciting stuff. I enjoy your blog, always something interesting and informative to learn and read about. On a "fluffier" level (lol) I started a blog 10 days ago about the building of our home and my passion for good design, would love you to check it out if you can....
www.theenchantedhome.blogspot.com

Also see you finished the Dead End gene pool...I really enjoyed it immensely, very entertaining but tragically comedic. Sad on many levels but a great read.
Have a fabulous day.

peggy braswell said...

Congratulations to you Ronda-Huffington Post is very lucky to have you. Grand article. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

mary said...

A million congratulations- your writing and choice of topics always makes my mind work--now a larger audience has the opportunity to broaden its horizons.

MELISSALEE22@MSN.COM said...

I LOVED THE OLD BUILDINGS...
GREAT PLACES TO DO PHOTO SHOOTS, BUT MAYBE PAINFUL FOR THOSE THAT LOVE TO SEE HISTORY IN A BETTER STATE OF REPAIR...
YOU ARE RIGHT RHONDA ABOUT AMERICA A HAVING ALL THESE DEVELOPMENTS THAT IN MOST CASES ARE NOT BUILT TO LAST AND HAVE NO ABILITY TO EVEN BE STANDING IN 100 YEARS OR MORE....
WOULD TAKE A FALLING DOWN OLD RELIC ANY DAY TO A TRACT HOME...


XXOO
MELISSA

Julie said...

So exciting...have fun with it and I look forward to reading your second post!!

Colette said...

Terrific start Rhonda...many congratulations and this is SUCH a timely and hot topic...not to mention green. Your readers may be interested in a related post Nicky Haslam wrote for the telegraph a few weeks ago that caused a furore!! We are thrilled to see you forwarding this cause!! x colette and Nicky

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/culture/nickyhaslam/100050240/instead-of-building-hideous-new-houses-lets-rescue-the-lovely-buildings-allowed-to-rot/

Jane K. Schott said...

As a born and raised Detroiter, I have always been distressed for decades about how they have destroyed some wonderful buildings in that town.

Congratulations on the HUFFINGTON POST job! I read it everyday and am a great admirer of your talent.

A match made in heaven!

Design Elements said...

post etraordinaire!

Ideezine said...

Ronda,

I enjoyed your posts on both sites. The truth is only awareness through education will help. I felt the overwhelming sadness in the photos. I wish these buildings could be seen as the "new green" way to sustain us historically and reinvent us globally.

click over to www.ideezine.blogspot.com you are on my list of "Super Comments Award" blogger list.

Bette