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Re: building typology vs usage

dieterdreist
Am Fr., 13. Sept. 2019 um 16:37 Uhr schrieb Kevin Kenny <[hidden email]>:
In the part of the country where I live, the vernacular architecture
is based on an idea of hardline Protestantism that rejected trappings.
The older buildings tend to be symmetric boxes (albeit with
more-or-less steeply pitched roofs; it *snows* here) that give no hint
to their purpose.


yes, this can be part of the concept. Still, a workshop or railway station will look different than an apartment building?



Likewise, buildings may reveal obviously their complex history.
Consider the Imam al-Khoei Foundation building in Jamaica, Queens, New
York.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imam_Al-Khoei_Benevolent_Foundation#/media/File:Imam_Al-Khoei_Foundation_8989_Van_Wyck_jeh.jpg
https://www.flickr.com/photos/imjustwalkin/29799850223 .  It's
obviously a converted factory - and just as obviously a mosque.


A factory for tobacco (today an office building) in the style of a mosque.

 
At
what point does the former usage become obscured enough that the
building acquires a new type?


this question has to be answered individually but in general I would say, when the former structure isn't recognizable any more.
 


The example that everyone loves to cite is 'building=church'. That
appears to come about because people imagine very likely a building
with a tall steeple or campanile, stained glass windows, perhaps built
in a Gothic or Romanesque style.  But a couple of centuries ago in
stern, Calvinist, North America, churches were plain affairs, with no
stained glass, no iconography, not even a cross atop the steeple:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/steveguttman/2814490383 is fairly
typical of a church of the denomination and period. Is that obviously
of the "church" type?  If so, can you say what features in particular
distinguish it from
https://www.oldhousedreams.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/10-21-Haskell.jpg,
which is pretty typical of a primary school of the same period? Many
of these buildings also started out their lives as government
buildings - the "meetinghouse" of a village would have been its seat
of government as well as its church, in an era before the separation
of church and state was a familiar idea. Meetinghouses were often even
plainer than the examples that I've given so far.
https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Exterior,_Sandown_Meetinghouse.jpg
was in fact the town's meetinghouse, simultaneously its place of
worship and seat of government, but from the exterior could just have
easily have been a workshop, a school, or a boardinghouse.


these wooden buildings are remains of a pioneer time, when things weren't settled, architects were rare and ressources scarce. If you build a serious church, you will use stone to make it last ;-) (not completely serious here, obviously). Take the greek temples as an example, they alse once were wooden structures, but the only testimonies of actually remained buildings are in stone.

If the same building was used as a meeting house and as a church, as seat of government etc., then these would still all be instances of public buildings intended to hold assemblies, and could be seen (if there are no systematical differences), as a common type of building. Maybe orientation comes into play? Churches traditionally are oriented east-west, with the entrance to the west and the altar in the east.

"Church" like "residential building" is also a quite generic term, while a common systematic approach for the distinction of church types distinguishes them into 4 "main subtypes", according to their generic shape.






If you have a high-Gothic building with twin campaniles, a magnificent
rose window, and similar trappings, that's now a banquet hall or has
been subdivided into flats, go ahead and tag it as "building=church"
if you like. I really don't care. But don't expect that every building
will fit an imagined typology.


no, of course not, but from what you have written above, it seems there are clearly distinguishable/definable building types in your area as well (you have provided excellent examples), so maybe the only missing link are suitable tags to be able to find them?

 
Frederik and others have told me
repeatedly, "if it still looks like a church, tag it building=church,
if it still looks like a school, tag it building=school, and so on."
But that doesn't inform me about the historic buildings that I'm most
interested in tagging. For the most part their history is complicated,
and their appearance is either likewise complicated, or else
undistinguished. What does a church, or a school, or a government
building, look like?


it depends on culture and tradition and the circumstances of the individual case, but if you know an area well you will very often be able to recognize them even if you do not know the specific building.

Cheers,
Martin


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Re: building typology vs usage

dieterdreist
In reply to this post by Tagging mailing list
Am Fr., 13. Sept. 2019 um 21:38 Uhr schrieb Dave F via Tagging <[hidden email]>:
"OpenStreetMap is a place for mapping things that are both real and current"


building!=yes  = 65 221 930


this is actually an encouraging number, given that it is around 20% while not so long ago, 98% of all building values were "yes", and most imports also used "yes" for buildings. It means that people care about the details and have started to add detail at this level.

Cheers,
Martin

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