1105 GMT February 16, 2020
Nowadays the impact of the architectural and urban patterns on human lifestyles and the formation of urban societies is widely acknowledged.
That goes without saying that it is not a unilateral relationship as the social living also inspires the architecture and the townscape in modern-day cities.
However, human factors have been constantly damaging the characteristics of classic architectural motives, threatening their durability.
These actions and alterations which appear in cityscapes in various manners and destruct the historic buildings are called by the sociology experts as ‘Vandalism’.
The damages might be minor but occur frequently over the course of time. It could be caused by the lack of knowledge of maintaining the historical monuments or even deliberate actions in the form of writing on the walls or stealing the component parts of a building.
The utter destruction of ancient buildings could even happen occasionally by the civil authorities as an excuse for environmental reform and avoiding urban decay.
Vandalism, of any kind, is a continual threat to our historical and cultural heritage, destroying the architectural attributes of the country.
Effective regulations are required along with accurate public education and instructions to overcome the detrimental effects of this social phenomenon and preserve the country's precious historical treasure for the future generations.
Following is the member of the Committee for the Civil Affairs of the Islamic Consultative Assembly Abdol-Karim Hosseinzadeh's views in relation to the issue:
IRAN DAILY: Would you please describe the significance of ancient architectural patterns?
ABDOL-KARIM HOSSEINZADEH: The individuality of every nation is a reflection of its cultural characteristics and some major part of those attributes are embodied through the architectural and civil designs in that land.
That is of such a high importance that in some countries they aim to preserve the monuments even dating back to dark ages of their history.
When you observe the architectural ages of our country, you would realize that the people's lifestyle arises from the architecture and urban designs. Spaces such as vestibule, Andaruni , Biruni, etc. were designed to ensure the privacy in residential buildings in Iranian traditional architecture and guests were not allowed to reach all parts of the house which all symbolize our type of living.
Moreover, the urban designing in our country through the ages also emerges from our worldview. So it is fair to say that there has always been a direct association between our way of life and historical architecture.
Given the impact of architectural patterns on people's lives, do you think the significance of the issue has been well-acknowledged by the people or authorities in particular?
Islamic-Iranian architecture has a rich history, putting us among the pioneer nations in terms of using materials, architectural and structural designs and residential building types. However, we have failed to protect those values in recent years.
Unfortunately, those artistic attributes have been totally neglected in the modern constructions in our country as today the interior and exterior views of the buildings do not represent our historic character at all.
A comprehensive architectural and civil planning was submitted at the Fifth Five-Year Economic Development Plan which unfortunately never went into effect and was totally ignored in the sixth plan.
What do you make of vandalism as a threat to the monuments?
Vandalism and its destructive effects on historic sites have been extensive. To minimize the damage, first and foremost we need to educate the citizens and inform them of the disastrous consequences as the continuous inappropriate behavior toward the ancient properties could easily ruin our heritage.
Furthermore, officials have failed to come up with effective measures to protect and restore the historic areas, disregarding the old architectural motives.
As a member of the Committee for the Civil Affairs of the Parliament what is your solution to revive the Islamic-Iranian architecture?
Both the citizens and authorities have to aim to secure that heritage.
We also need to allocate more funds in that field to boost the tourism in our country as a profitable business for generations to come.
Through the strict rules and regulations and close watch by the officials, the urban construction would be back on the right track and follows the Islamic-Iranian architectural order.
The parliament could feel the legal void in that regard through the governmental bills and allocate the required finances in the government budget.