The construction of a renewed habitability of the contemporary Alpine space requires a profound critical revision of the ways of looking and of the cultures concerning the theme of re-use of the built heritage. Over the last few decades, a sort of crystallization of imaginaries, operational practices and development ideas has emerged around the two terms of re-use and heritage and their ways of interaction, which today is likely to be an obstacle to the construction of new development scenarios for the Alpine region. Trying to imagine new values and meanings of the concepts of reuse and heritage, however, requires the questioning of those patrimonialization cultures that have served as the ultimate framework for the project of the Alpine space. The essay reconstructs those design processes that, starting from a renewed productive vision of the mountain, attempt today to overcome a hypostatized vision of the conventional cultural landscape produced by the patrimonialist paradigm, to embrace a transformative attitude of the heritage based on the materic character of the basic elements of the Alpine space. In particular we want to underline how the contemporary design culture in the Alps is directed to the development of synthetic languages aimed at capturing the stratified and diachronic dimension of the built landscape through metasemic cognitive and interpretative practices. It is an attitude that, against a background of the change in perspective brought about by climate change and environmental issues, allows the maximization of the opportunities and physical resources recovered in the place, perfectly in line with the aptitude for the continuous re-use of the Alpine civilizations of the past, which focuses on the awareness of participating in a constructive process of transformation of the long lasting Alpine territory.