Modernism on the Brink? Assessing Threats to Modern Buildings and Landscapes

The modern movement was defined by tremendous social change, experimentation, and innovation. Practitioners in this period created buildings and sites that melded exterior and interior spaces, espoused transparency and openness as a guiding tenet, and emphasized the “honesty" of structural and material expression with new technologies.  Ironically, these essential characteristics have made these resources very vulnerable – with common challenges related to environmental sustainability, energy efficiency, and material and system failures. This 2015 San Diego conference session is back by popular demand. The "Modernism on the Brink" session was standing room only at the conference and attendees requested "more modernism." We're bringing this session online for those of you who couldn't make the conference session. Using case studies from throughout California, this session examines the vulnerabilities of  modern sites, discusses significance and integrity, and proposes strategies for preservation and reuse.

Learning Objectives

  • Identify key threats related to modern architecture and landscape design
  • Determine the character-defining features of modern architecture and landscape design
  • Evaluate significance for modern architecture and landscape design
  • Assess integrity for modern architecture and landscape design

Documents & Downloads


  • Gretchen Hilyard, Preservation Planner, City of San Francisco
  • Andrew Wolfram, AIA, LEED® AP, Principal at TEF Architecture and San Francisco Historic  Preservation Commission President

Continuing Education

  • AIA
    • Insights
    • Materials & Methods
    • Project Types
    • Practice
    • Sustainable Design
    • Other
  • AICP
    • History
    • Housing
    • Climate
    • Green Communities
    • Environment
    • Housing
    • Revitalization