“Ruin Value” is an architectural concept for aesthetic degradation

The Greek Parthenon, an example of “ruin value” | source: wikimedia

Ruin value (German: Ruinenwert) is the concept that a building be designed such that if it eventually collapsed, it would leave behind aesthetically pleasing ruins that would last far longer without any maintenance at all. The idea was pioneered by German architect Albert Speer while planning for the 1936 Summer Olympics and published as “The Theory of Ruin Value” (Die Ruinenwerttheorie), although he was not its original inventor. The idea was supported by Adolf Hitler, who planned for such ruins to be a symbol of the greatness of the Third Reich, just as Ancient Greek and Roman ruins were symbolic of those civilizations.””

“A more modern example of intended ruins were the planned warning signs for the proposed nuclear waste repository at Yucca Mountain (see Human Interference Task Force), which were intended to endure for 10,000 years, and yet still convey an enduring (if negative) impression on future generations: “Keep out. Don’t dig here.”

Source: Wikipedia


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