The current European migrant crisis has illustrated historic preservation's limits in incorporating sites of transience. During 2016, the Greek government managed its surge of migrants by erecting 50 dispersed camps throughout the mainland. Built out of tents, trailers, squats and other ephemeral architectures, refugee and migrant settlements leave a light footprint on the landscape and are easily erased. By design, camps perform impermanence to a double audience, to the natives who do not want their guests to settle permanently and to the migrants who wish to return home or advance to more stable accommodations. Using the region of Thessaly as a case study, we track the processes of settlement during the course of one year and examine the intersection between a single displaced Syrian group and the sites of cultural heritage in which they were temporarily housed. They include medieval monuments, abandoned industrial buildings, bankrupt markets, and decommissioned army bases. By possessing no real estate value, the ruins into which the new camps were inserted facilitated a process of adaptive reuse.


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pp. 88-113
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