Preserving Perth's built environment can be a controversial and expensive undertaking.
But the fruits of these challenges have begun to emerge all over WA - with old buildings taking on a new life and being used for a purpose quite different from their original role.
WA Heritage Office executive director Graeme Gammie said owners and developers were increasingly seeing the commercial benefits and exciting opportunities in adapting heritage buildings into new uses.
"Perth CBD is a prime example with a number of heritage-registered buildings central to a range of new developments including Brookfield Place, the Old Treasury Buildings, Perth City Link and the William and Wellington Street Precinct," he said.
"Equally, there are a number of excellent examples in the suburbs, including the former Midland Railway Workshops and the former WA Royal Institute for the Blind which has been adapted into the new home of the West Australian Ballet and won the 2013 WA Heritage Award for adaptive reuse.
"These projects illustrate how creative solutions can overcome challenges in adapting heritage buildings to ensure that they are used and valued for generations to come."
Mr Gammie said that more developers were realising that heritage provided a point of difference that delivered an ambiance that could not be replicated by new buildings.
"When combined with contemporary design, the sensitive adaption of heritage buildings creates vibrant and visually exciting spaces that people want to be a part of," he said. "The retention of heritage places also makes an important contribution to environmental, social and economic sustainability."
Perhaps one of the most intriguing transformations has been at Clontarf, where four concrete handball courts from the 1940s have become stylish classrooms and educational facilities in 2013.
The courts were buried 4m into the earth bank on the Canning River foreshore.
For years it was used for storage and rubbish collection and its wall surfaces were degraded and damaged by fire.
However, the robustness of the court structure - which was 4.2m wide and 31m long - was considered ideal for adaptation.
Heritage architect Alice Steedman said the project had been very successful and created four accessible, easy-to-use classrooms "with fantastic views of the river".
She said the project had not only retained the heritage fabric of the handball courts but also kept the heritage fabric visible.
"It took a lot of work and a lot of creativity but the end result was certainly worthwhile," she said.