FORCED REUSE, selected cases of transformations
© KOSMOS Architects


March 2024 to August 2025

Leading institution: HEAD – Genève
Project leader: Leonid Slonimskiy
Project team: Leonid Slonimskiy, Gili Merin, Valentina De Luigi
Financing: HES-SO RCDAV
Co-financing: HEAD – Genève (HES-SO)

FORCED REUSE is a research project investigating the phenomenon of adaptive reuse within architecture and interior architecture, focusing specifically on instances of forced reuse driven by acute community needs, and conducted by users, independently from architects and designers. Examples include the adaptive reuse of churches in the Soviet Union as stables, storage facilities, or swimming pools due to religious prohibitions, as well as the transformation of cooperative garages in East Germany into leisure, commerce, and cultural spaces amidst economic crises.

The research project builds upon existing research and initiatives centered on the theme of “reuse.” In contrast to conventional “sustainable” practices driven by environmental concerns or adaptive reuse for historical preservation, this research explores instances where reuse is motivated by scarcity and practicality.  The research project will analyze and classify case studies from diverse geographical and historical contexts, highlighting examples that are both innovative and largely overlooked in current research. Deliverables will include an exhibition and publication aimed at informing architects, designers, construction companies, and developers about the potential for responsible resource management through forced reuse practices.

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