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Can You Use A Temporary Building Forever?




The line between permanent and temporary buildings is getting increasingly blurred and muddled, and this can turn a question that is purely philosophical into a far more practical dilemma.


In the past, the divide between a temporary and a permanent base of operations was relatively clear and straightforward. You would use a pop-up workshop or a storage tent for a very short space of time and dismantle it in favour of a headquarters that lasts years.


However, there are so many cases where this seemingly natural order is reversed, where something that was meant to have a short lifespan endures through the years, whilst a seemingly permanent structure ultimately faces demolition long before its time.


Famously, the Eiffel Tower was meant to be knocked down after just 20 years but still exists to this day, whilst the story of many expensive stadiums and venues that were meant to have a lifespan of many decades only to be knocked down exceedingly quickly.


It has become such a contentious issue that world-class stadium venues are designed to be temporary as well, and whilst these examples are global monuments, the same reasons for these concerns can be found with businesses of all shapes and sizes.


Business buildings need to be suitable and fit the needs of a business, otherwise, they are destined to cause problems and be unsuitable for some or all of their inhabitants.


The problem with that is that business needs often move much quicker than construction projects can adapt to, and if a company is scaling up quickly or the seasonal nature of its business means it is exceptionally busier at some times than others, that can cause a lot of problems.


Either it can lead to the greater expense of having a large facility to maintain that is only used for some of the year, or areas of a facility need to be adapted for a purpose they weren’t designed for.


Conversely, sometimes a building designed to be adapted or even taken down entirely ends up being absolutely perfect, and with some adaptations, a temporary base of operations of high enough quality and fit for purpose can easily turn into a headquarters.


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