Need for Architectural Restoration of Secular Built Heritage ...

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Secular built heritage is the physical realm encompassing the social, cultural, and economic aspects of the city. It is important to conserve built heritage apart from monuments and groups of buildings. This article puts forth the schemes and policies relevant to conservation in India to emphasise the need for conservation and relevant research in Kanchipuram. Kanchipuram is an important city historically, culturally, and spiritually. This study focuses on one of the traditional zones of Kanchipuram, Periya Kanchi, and explores the status of built heritage. The degree of changes and their reasons are probed. The degree of change is expressed by a multi-criteria analysis considering eleven surveyed parameters. The results of the analysis portray that 95 percent of the households surveyed have undergone a high and medium degree of changes. A simple regression analysis suggests that reconstruction can still be prevalent in Periya Kanchi even if there is high interest in conservation among residents. This article prescribes architectural restoration as a mode of urban transformation. It further suggests participatory planning and design as the approach to implementing architectural restoration.