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Revitalizing small historic townscapes in Southern province, Sri Lanka: identifying core elements of town's identities based on residents' and visitors' cognition of towns

Author:

Kapila Dharmasena Silva

University of Moratuwa, LK
About Kapila Dharmasena
Department of Architecture
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Abstract

This research addresses the issues of preservation and revitalization of small-scale towns in the Southern Province in Sri Lanka. These towns were originated during the colonial occupation in the country in 18th and 19th centuries as service centers along main arteries that connected the main urban centers of the region. Although they currently do not have specific historical monuments, as grouping of buildings and as townscapes they possess specific identity by which one can distinguish them from the similar kind of towns in the other part of the country. However, the pressure for the growth and development has threatened this specific identity and the visual character of these towns. There is the need for the revitalization as well as preservation of these towns. Thus the major concern is how to struck the balance between the need for growth and change and the need for preservation and continuity. In this endeavor it is important to identify what components of these towns are to be preserved and what components are to be developed. The present study attempts to identify the core-characteristics of the physical settings to be preserved as well as to be developed in these towns. Hence, the final outcome of the project would be useful in two ways. First it will provide a basis to formulate a method that can be adopted in identifying the core elements of town's identity in preservation programs; second it will be useful in formulating a conceptual framework for the development and revitalization of these towns with a concern for preservation.
How to Cite: Silva, K.D., (2016). Revitalizing small historic townscapes in Southern province, Sri Lanka: identifying core elements of town's identities based on residents' and visitors' cognition of towns. Built-Environment Sri Lanka. 1(2), pp.10–24. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/besl.v1i2.7623
Published on 29 Jul 2016.
Peer Reviewed

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