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Decision : 30 COM 7B.73
State of Conservation (Historic Areas of Istanbul)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-06/30.COM/7B,

2. Recalling Decisions 28 COM 15B.80 and 29 COM 7B.70 adopted at its 28th (Suzhou, 2004) and 29th (Durban, 2005) sessions respectively,

3. Notes the continued efforts made by the national authorities, the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality and the district municipalities with specific projects including the European Capital of Culture 2010 initiative, the substantive inventory process of core areas of the World Heritage property at the Historic Peninsula as well as improving legal provisions;

4. Endorses the detailed recommendations of the joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS mission;

5. While noting with concern the degradation and loss of timber houses, in particular in the Zeyrek and Suleymaniye core areas, welcomes the initiation of the urban design and implementation action plans for these areas;

6. Notes with satisfaction that the State Party has promptly halted the restoration works in Ayvansaray district, which includes Tekfur Palace and Anemas Dungeon, upon the request of the World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS mission;

7. Requests the State Party to urgently implement the recommendations of the joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS mission, and in particular:

a) Review all new large-scale development and infrastructure projects, which could threaten the visual integrity of the Historic Peninsula (including skyscraper development such as the Dubai Towers, the proposed high-rise development at Hydarpaşa), the Galataport project, and the new bridge across the Golden Horn as well as the extension project for the Four Seasons Hotel; and carry out impact studies according to international standards;

b) Improve the cooperation between District Municipalities, the Metropolitan Municipality, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism and other stakeholders, including universities, NGOs, professional organizations, inhabitants etc., enhance coordination of all planning organs and establish clear management and monitoring responsibilities, including the designation of a specific World Heritage site coordinator;

c) Re-establish and reorganize the World Heritage Coordination Unit of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism to provide effective support from the central Government for the safeguarding of the integrity of the World Heritage property;

d) Prepare an integrated and comprehensive World Heritage management plan, by 1 February 2008 at the latest, utilizing the 1:5000 Urban Conservation Plan and the 1:1000 Implementation Plan for the Historic Peninsula (2005) and the current Museum City project;

e) Submit a Progress Report on the preparation of the World Heritage management plan, by 1 February 2007, and ensure that the World Heritage management plan be developed according to international standards;

f) Submit by 1 February 2008 a revised Süleymaniye Renewal Project to constitute a Süleymaniye Conservation Implementation Plan, with a new focus on the conservation of existing buildings of heritage value and extend the project boundaries to cover the whole Süleymaniye World Heritage core area;

8. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2007, for examination by the Committee at its 31st session in 2007, a progress report including all issues indicated above to enable the World Heritage Committee to consider the inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger, in the case of absence of tangible remedial measures to prevent the loss of the outstanding universal value of this property, at its 32nd session in 2008.

 Decisions Report
Context of Decision
Themes: Conservation
Focal Point: EUR/NA
States Parties: Turkey
Year: 2006
Decision Code: 30 COM 7B.73