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Decision : 33 COM 8B.36
Cultural properties - Extension of properties already inscribed on the World Heritage List - Spišský Hrad and its associated cultural monuments (Slovakia)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Documents WHC-09/33.COM/8B and WHC-09/33.COM/INF.8B1,

2. Approves the extension of Spišský Hrad and its associated cultural monuments to include Levoča and the Work of Master Paul in Spiš, on the basis of criterion (iv), and the new denomination Levoča, Spišský Hrad, and the associated cultural monuments, Slovakia;

3. Adopts the following Statement of Outstanding Universal Value:

Brief Synthesis

The castle of Spišský Hrad, the town of Levoča, the associated sites in Spišské Podhradie, Spišská, Kapitula, and Žehra constitute a remarkable group of military, urban, political, and religious elements, of a type that was relatively common in medieval Europe, but of which almost none have survived in such a complete condition with equivalent integrity. Levoča, Spišský Hrad, and the associated cultural monuments is one of the most extensive groups of military, urban, and religious buildings from the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance in Eastern Europe, the Romanesque and Gothic architecture of which has remained remarkably intact in Spišský Hrad, Spišské Podhradie, Spišská, Kapitula, and Žehra, together with the urban plan of Levoča. It is a group belonging to the same Saxon colonial settlement in the Middle Ages, of which it illustrates the material and cultural successes. It testifies to its role as a political, religious, and cultural centre of the first order over a long time-span in Eastern Europe.

Criterion (iv): Levoča, Spišský Hrad and the associated cultural monuments of Spišské Podhradie, Spišska Kapitula, and Zehra, extended to Levoča and the works of Master Paul in Spiš, constitute an outstanding example of a remarkably well preserved and authentic group of buildings which is characteristic of medieval settlement in Eastern Europe, in its military, political, religious, mercantile, and cultural functions.

Integrity and Authenticity

The Romanesque and Gothic architecture of Spišský Hrad and its associated cultural monuments, one of the most extensive groups of 13th and 14th century military, political, and religious buildings in Eastern Europe, has remained remarkably intact. The degree of authenticity of the property is satisfactory. Special attention should, however, be given to the quality of the maintenance and restoration work on the private buildings of Levoča.

Management and protection requirements

The protection of the property and the management plan and its practical organization are adequate. However, they need to be strengthened and improved in certain respects and the management plan needs to be published.

4. Recommends that the State Party publish the management plan for the whole of the property and providing a copy in one of the two working languages of the Convention as soon as it is available;

5. Also recommends as regards Levoča that:

a) Special attention should be paid to monitoring the atmosphere in St Jacob's Church, because of the fragile state of conservation of the polychromatic wooden works of Master Paul, and if necessary to providing ventilation and regulating visits;

b) Consolidation of financial resources is needed for the works required to renovate and maintain St Jacob's Church;

c) The traffic and transport plan should be strengthened, in order to ensure better expression of the Outstanding Universal Value of the property and improved conditions for visitors;

d) The tourist accommodation inside the property and the buffer zone should be analysed, and that specific directives should be considered to control its development and recommend rules of good practice;

e) In connection with the management plan the policy for receiving visitors and for the economic development and interpretation of the property should be made more specific;

f) The municipal fire-fighting plan should be strengthened by means of a detailed intervention scheme for the historic town.

Themes: Inscriptions on the World Heritage List
States Parties: Slovakia
Year: 2009
Decision Code: 33 COM 8B.36