IELTS Writing Task 2/ Essay Topics with sample answer.

IELTS Writing Task 2 Sample 59 - Should a city try to preserve its old, historic buildings or destroy them

IELTS Writing Task 2/ IELTS Essay:

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Should a city try to preserve its old, historic buildings or destroy them and replace them with modern buildings?

What is your viewpoint on this issue?

Use specific reasons and examples to support your opinion.

You should write at least 250 words. 

Sample Answer 1:
 Some may acquiesce with the fact that replacing old structures with contemporary monuments is a good idea while others may not condone with this. However, I candidly believe that historic structures should be preserved. This essay outlines the coherent reasons for doing so.

Industrialization has evolved, thus leading to an insatiable desire for wealth. Demolishing of old buildings for spaces to build casinos and hotels has been a norm these days. Old buildings are a depiction of our native history for example; the Jalian Wala Bagh in Amritsar, shows the people who lost their lives, this revives patriotism in the youth. The Taj Mahal in India, a monument of love serves as an example of unconditional love. These are emblems which will assist children to learn history. In New Zealand, old earth pots were discovered from old monuments, that helped assess which cereals our ancestors ate.

Secondly, History revitalizes the tourism industry, an instance of this is the Fort Jesus Museum in Mombasa, Kenya. A huge number of local and foreign tourists pay a visit to the museum regularly. This thus leads to an appreciation of the local currency and cross-cultural pollination, therefore bringing a country to a trajectory model. The funds raised through tourism may be used for refurbishing the old structures.

To recapitulate it all, I firmly believe historical structures are a heritage of any country. Thereby destroying them is like unleashing a lethal war on our history. An example is better than a precept, and history can, therefore, be taught by the use of old monuments.

[Written by - Andy]

Model Answer 2:
Some people think that old, historic buildings are no need for the city and they should be destroyed and replaced with modern ones. However, other people believe that historic buildings must be preserved in order to know and remember our past. For several reasons that I will mention bellow, I agree with those people who want to preserve old, historical buildings.

First of all, by preserving historical buildings we pass our history to our future generations. I think that our children should know their history, learn from it and respect it. People need to know their traditions and customs, which are priceless and irreplaceable. Our history is our knowledge and power. In my opinion, we need to preserve and restore historical buildings. By destroying them we show our disrespect to our forefathers and their traditions.

Second of all, by preserving historical buildings a city can attract many travellers. Welcoming tourists a city can get many benefits including money, which can be spent on preserving historical buildings as well as on improving roads and facilities. Every city has its own tradition and history which is reflected through the art and creation of the building mostly. Destroying those heritage means destroying the old value and history.

Also, many tourists mean a lot of new business opportunities. Another important aspect of this is that businessmen will be willing to build new recreational centres, hotels, movie theatres, shopping centres to make a city more attractive to travellers. In addition to those practical benefits, many people will have the opportunity to get a job. All this is good for the economy of the city.

To sum up, I believe that preserving old, historical buildings can bring only benefits to a city and all humankind.

(Approximately 289 words)

(This model answer has been prepared by the site developer. However, please note that this is just one example out of many possible answers.)


Model Answer 3:
Modernization has resulted in the rapid expansion of cities, which has left its heritage and culture behind. Day by day new commercial complexes and other buildings are coming up in the place of older buildings. Sometimes historically significant buildings have been demolished to build new structures. This has stirred into an interesting debate on whether the historic buildings should become the prey of modernization or not.

Firstly, conserving historical building is a means of transferring the ancestral legacy to future generations. These are a great means for our children to learn about our culture and heritage, also such monuments often give insight into our ancestor's lifestyle. Knowing our history and giving respect to it is very much important to advocate patriotism in young people.

Secondly, such buildings will attract more tourists, hence, the tourism industry will grow. This brings more money, thus improves the lives of people over there. This money could be used to preserve and renovate such buildings. Additionally, a city becomes well known among other parts and this increases chances of getting more funds and investments.

Finally, increased tourism means increased income. To cater to the increasing number of tourists’ new hotels, resorts and better facilities have to be built. Apart from bringing more money, it increases employment opportunities too.

In my opinion, preserving such buildings would greatly benefit the economy and also teaches future generations about their history, culture and traditions. Furthermore, it significantly contributes to infrastructure developments and modernization, at the same time allows saving cultural beauty.

(Approximately 251 words)

(by- Santosh)


Model Answer 4:
It is believed that old, historic buildings are not useful to the community and they occupy space in an already premium location. Take Colosseum of Rome for example, the building occupies a lot of space in the middle of a city but it has more advantages that compensate for the loss of premium due to land cost. It can be argued that contemporary buildings have more advantages than disadvantages by analysing the impact due to culture and revenue from tourism in these buildings.

The rich cultural and heritage of our ancestors can only be passed down to future generations through such structures. The structure is evidence of history and portrays itself to provide a comparison of lifestyle evolution since the recorded history. As an illustration, Eiffel tower standing tall in the centre of the city was built about a century ago. It clearly is not having any useful money generating purpose apart from tourism. However, the future generations can take it as a proof for the existence of scholars who could build skyscrapers which could last several centuries without the use of modern technology and equipment. The pride of owning such engineering marvel is priceless.

Secondly, the government’s spending to preserve this building is benefitted multiple folds through the revenue generating by touring individuals. The revenue generated from the Tirupathi temple, for instance, accounts for the second largest revenue generating source after tax revenue in case of Andhra Pradesh. Hence, it can be clearly seen that the amount of effort and the time invested by city authorities could fetch a very attractive return over investment than building modern structures.

On the other hand, due to the migration of people from countrysides and population expansion within cities, there is a huge demand for real estate space. There is increasing pressure on local governments to demolish heritage buildings due to inefficient use of space inside them. For instance, Singapore which has a total area of 27 km2 cannot afford to have a large colosseum. These days, though, local bodies are coming up with innovative ideas like moving an entire building by fitting wheels under them. Such techniques can be used instead of destroying the culture and revenue from them.

In short, preserving a historic building within a city proves to be a highly valuable proposition than replacing them with modern buildings. Hence it is recommended to city officials for looking into every possible alternative than demolishing the historic monuments.

(Approximately 432 words)

(by- Vasudevan)


Model Answer 5:
Past and future have to be a part of every city's characteristics; this is what makes cities different and diverse. That’s how we get attracted to one city and feels bored at another. Walking in the streets alone should give us an idea of the history of the city or how technologically advanced it is. So, I think it is a critical task and an influencing one on the inhabitants of the city to decide what historical buildings to keep and what to replace with modern iconic ones. This balance can keep the soul of a city and still hold a place on the race of development.

On another hand, I think it is crucial to keep a significant amount of any city's historical buildings as it teaches people about their past and how they actually developed, it grows a sense of loyalty and patriotism; it increases the feeling of ownership and in return preservation. In general these impacts positively on society and on the message any visitor leaves with after a visit.

Here comes to mind how the city of Munich in Germany rebuilt and still most of the historical buildings destroyed during the world war two, it is an accurate imitation of the original destroyed building using archived photos and old blueprints, this shows how significant history is to their culture and way of life.

In brief, it's not the buildings that are preserved, it's the history, the stories behind those buildings and the people spent parts of their lives on those buildings, preserving all this will never happen unless there are still remains of their presence and those buildings stands as a witness and a living proof of this existence.

(Approximately 285 words)

(by- Mohamed Shokry)

1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Rating 4.18 (17 Votes)

Write about the following topic:

Some people believe a city should try to preserve its old, historic buildings, but others think we should destroy them and replace them with modern buildings.

Discuss both points of view on this issue and then give your own opinion.

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

It is often argued whether authorities ought to protect traditional buildings rather than replacing them with contemporary ones. This essay will elaborate more on both sides, and I will explain why I believe that newer buildings should be constructed while letting the old ones go.

On one side of the argument, some argue that authorities should conserve old properties. This is because those places are used as expressions of history, and demonstrate how people were culturally in the past. For example, old theatres used to have closer and smaller seats, because historically people were quite thinner than these days. Hence, it is historical proof of how society has changed over the years. In addition, these structures would also serve as touristic sites to the cities, which, if used correctly, might provide a financial return to future investments, helping not only the locals but also to entertain visitors.

On the other hand, demolishing older places in order to construct modern ones would increase the employment rate, as many people would be required for all the improvements, not only during the constructions but also after the modernization, as the place might be transformed into an office or business centre. Furthermore, it also helps solve problems of homelessness, as old buildings which sometimes are unused, would instead be reformed into apartments or houses. For example, some train stations in São Paulo were transformed into popular condominiums to supply society’s accommodation needs.

To conclude, I reckon that both sides of the argument have their merits. On balance, I tend to agree that contemporary buildings should be constructed to replace the old ones, as I feel it would bring more benefits such as jobs opportunities and more real estate, rather than historical values and possible investment in tourism by preserved structures.

IELTS Mentor
Dear Rukesh, We are very happy to hear that.
Very good. I love it.
Historic monuments, remarkable sculptures and famous buildings have great significance in a city and they represent the history and tradition of an area. They attract many local and foreign tourists which enable the government to have additional funds and let the people learn about the past and tradition of an area. However, it is a matter of great regret that, many such historic buildings are destroyed to build new multi-storied modern buildings in many cities. First of all, historic buildings have great significance in preserving old history, tradition and replacing them with modern buildings is a great loss. We need to pass our history to our next generation and destroying these historic significances would leave us nothing to give to our coming generation. Secondly, old buildings are attractive monuments and they will surely attract a large number of local and foreign tourists. This helps the visiting tourists learn new things and the authority also earn from the tickets. Third, every historic monument has a great story to tell. For example, Taj Mahal, one of the seven wonders of the world, is the oldest monument that India had. The monument defines the symbol of love, devotion and fine architectural works. It describes the story Mogul emperor Shah Jahan who reigned a few hundred years ago and still remains as a representative of Indian history. In conclusion, preserving these historic monuments will show the history behind them and also attracts foreigners which will help government a lot. In my opinion, maintaining these buildings is better than destroying them as we can build modern buildings in open space.