"This contribution addresses the metamorphosis of places according to the succession of their sequential use, their non-use and their rehabilitation. In this respect, the presentation will examine the origins of place as well as the origins of their initial use. Given that these origins must withstand historical events, this study considers personal and collective memories of places. We intend to show that even if human memory is grounded in the "objective" reality of spaces it transforms and surpasses that reality. These processes are a kind of transcendence of the shared, trivial reality of places. Consequently, they are one indicator of the adequation between the reality of a place, and both the individual and shared sensitivity they evoke. When one returns to already known, historical places which have had their material characteristics profoundly altered, yet to which personal memories remain unchanged, there is a return inwards to the self, especially the subjective adequation between existant spaces and the intimate, inner self. Although the observation by an individual (or the sensitivity of a group) may rediscover the initial reality of a locality, the metamorphosis of that locality is not accomplished, and the original values attributed to it remain active and evolve over time. Nevertheless, it is rare to rediscover this adequation in the actual sequences of the rehabilitation of places. On the contrary, rather than adopting methodological principles that overcome haphazard consequences, it has been common practice in architectural and urban renewal projects to adopt a simple coupling of available assets and needs. In essence, the renovation and reuse of places is often considered solely in terms of short-term economic and functional criteria: It is considered reasonable to plan for new functions and new use values at the same time, whereas the history of human values attributed to places, as well as the prospects for changing values in the future are overlooked. Some examples of diverse rehabilitation projects of urban places have been chosen in order to make an indepth study of the distinction between transformation and metamorphosis. Places that are being altered by metamorphosis always raise questions about their symbolic value, in particular their moral appropriation which overrides their legal ownership. It is therefore important to secure the permanent life of buildings by adapting their interior to needs and requirements of the residents, and it is equally important to provide adequate conditions for the reappropriation of space, in reference to the memory of the initial use of the place. A basic task in the rehabilitation of existing buildings consists in devoting a careful attention to the survey or diagnosis of the place. If this survey is achieved successfully, it will outline the complexity of factors involved, that may influence the course of rehabilitation and prevent it from becoming purely technically oriented and totally unrelated to social concerns. It is currently accepted that the diagnosis helps outlining the future condition of the building. Only then does the programming of the rehabilitation follows, as a prerequisite for the actual design task.The design task or conception of the rehabilitation should not lead to a compromise, but must be considered as a kind of challenge to favour the collective appropriation of the place. Such a task is both multidisciplinary and cross-cultural in scope, since there is no universal truth deprived of local contingencies.We consider the ultimate issue to be the meaning of place and the corresponding related values which belong, both to the past and present."