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    Revitalizing Historical Monuments: Enhancing the Process

    In Poland, thousands of historical monuments from various periods await revitalization. Unfortunately, many of them deteriorate for years due to lengthy building permit procedures. Improving the efficiency of the monument revitalization process will be the focus of a webinar on August 24th at 10:00 a.m. on PAP MediaRoom.


    The Polish registry of historical monuments contains around 80,000 immovable treasures, encompassing diverse structures. Some have been restored, yet the majority still require revitalization. The issuance of construction permits can sometimes drag on.

    “We encounter situations where projects are being negotiated for a year or two,”

    says Piotr Grochowski, Chief Architect of the Arche Group.

    Navigating approvals with authorities varies depending on the city or region and the conservator or institution in charge.

    “This is a significant problem faced by investors; there’s no time frame for the office. Even if deadlines are set, they aren’t enforced,”

    adds Piotr Grochowski.

    Moreover, some conservation offices have less experienced staff, hesitant to make decisions.

    “We encounter mistrust towards investors. We understand it, but we have our experience and completed projects. Everything can be verified,”

    emphasizes Piotr Grochowski.

    Arche initiates contact with conservators in the very early stages, sometimes even before land purchase, discussing revitalization. Often, despite initial acceptance of principles, changes arise in conservation concepts after project development.

    “But we’ve already bought the land and implemented our plans,”

    Piotr Grochowski reveals.

    It also happens that investors desire minimal intervention in restored monuments, while conservators push for more significant changes, returning properties to forms they deem appropriate. For instance, they recommend removing Art Nouveau alterations from an 18th-century palace, even though they hold intrinsic interest.

    “There’s no single defined approach. Certain principles and conduct norms should be consistent and shared by both parties. Valuable guidelines could stem from the Ministry for Monument Conservators, addressing specific matters. Sometimes, this succeeds. Recently, guidelines were established by the Ministry and Chief Monument Conservator concerning fortification structures. It’s a foundation to build upon,”

    states Piotr Grochowski.
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