How buildings decay

I was at a conference at the University of Portland a few weeks ago, and several of the sessions were held in Franz Hall, the campus’ relatively new classroom building.

The building and its classrooms have an attractively modern and stylish look. Nothing has been broken, and none of the built-in equipment has become obsolete. I would imagine that Denney Hall at Ohio State seemed very similar in the early 1960s, right after it had been built.

By the time I got to OSU, though, Denney Hall was aging, worn out, and dingy. Few people who went to Ohio State in the ’90s would have a kind word to say about the building or the fixtures in it.

And I wonder whether Franz Hall will be like that in 30 years.

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