1.         Historic Centre of Sighişoara (Romania) (C 902)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1999

Criteria  (iii)(v)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger  N/A

Previous Committee Decisions  see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/902/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 2004-2004)
Total amount approved: USD 20,000
For details, see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/902/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds

N/A

Previous monitoring missions

2002 : Joint UNESCO / ICOMOS mission

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

a) Park and development projects and revalorisation in general, submission of restoration and construction projects to the World Heritage Centre lacking;

b) Deterioration of monuments in general and fortifications in particular, weak protection and maintenance measures;

c) Lack of an approved Protection and Management Plan

Illustrative material  see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/902/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2012

The State Party report, received on 3 February 2012, provides information on follow-up actions undertaken by the local and national authorities following Decision 34 COM 7B.93, as follows:

a) Monitoring of the state of conservation

An evaluation of the work has been prepared for 2010-2011, covering 40 work sites in the protected area, with a description of the main ones; others are announced for Sections 12, 16 and 22 of the historic fortifications, but some sections of the wall and the Tinsmiths’ Tower are still classified as constructions under threat for which at this time there is no concrete funding project. Rehabilitation projects of ancient buildings are ongoing or foreseen, as well as infrastructure work in the Lower Town. A document presents the development project of the Citadel garden, a zone where major intervention is required.

b) Protection and management of the site

The State Party indicated the existence of a Protection and Management Programme (approved in November 2011, Decision N° 1102) as well as its willingness to continue in a rational manner the restoration and conservation work of the constituent elements of the property and its Outstanding Universal Value.

In the framework of the new national law on the management of cultural properties inscribed on the World Heritage List, the Municipality has established the World Heritage Bureau of Sighişoara attached to the Town Planning Department. It is responsible for monitoring the implementation of the Management Plan (2011-2017).

Within the Zonal Urban Plan (ZUP) the protected property is governed by a Local Urban Regulation (LUR). It was approved by the Municipal Council in September 2011 and is shortly to be approved by the Government. The State Party indicates that there is no intent, or project, or building or restoration permit that could irremediably and irreversibly affect the Outstanding Universal Value of the property. All interventions must be approved by the competent institutions of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, in accordance with the protection of historic monuments.

As indicated, a Protection and Management Programme of Monuments exists, but the overall Management Plan for the historic centre is not yet finalised, and remains in draft form. Participation in the European network HerO (Heritage as Opportunity) is evoked in support of its preparation.

Two recent municipal decisions regulate traffic in the Citadel and conditions for the exercise of commercial activities of a touristic nature (cafés, restaurants, traditional crafts,  etc).

The HERITPROT project, approved in December 2011, aims to provide better protection of the property in the event of natural and technological risks, in particular protection against fire at the historic property.

c) Rehabilitation, restoration, construction

The State Party underlines that the regulatory framework for protection and the management documents shall facilitate the urban development and revitalisation of the historic fabric, whilst safeguarding the authenticity and integrity of the town centre. In this framework, the State Party proposes an overview of the projects foreseen for the revitalisation of the Historic Centre of Sighişoara, in a perspective of sustainable development and the reuse of historic buildings and areas. In particular, for public projects, a Tourist Information Centre with a cultural element and a museum are foreseen. Other measures are envisaged: to render vacant areas located in the perimeter of the property and its buffer zone constructible; to authorize of the raising of some historic buildings, to replace buildings incompatible with the value of the property. Structural work is also foreseen (parking areas, mechanical access to the Citadel from the Lower Town, diversion road, etc.). 

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS and ICCROM

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies take note of the detailed information concerning the actions undertaken by the State Party. However, they express their concern with regard to the development projects mentioned in the report, and recommend that the Committee invite the State Party to prepare and submit to the World Heritage Centre impact studies on the Outstanding Universal Value of any restoration or construction project foreseen in the perimeter of the property, in conformity with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines.

They consider that the draft Management Plan submitted by the State Party needs to be further developed and completed, in order to be approved by all the parties concerned and to be implemented without delay under the transversal authority of the World Heritage Bureau of Sighişoara. It should define an effective conservation and protection framework and indicate the management system established.

They underline that it is primordial that the State Party pay particular attention to the conservation of the ensemble of the historic monuments within the property, and especially those in a poor state of conservation and which do not benefit yet from a conservation programme. 

Decision Adopted: 36 COM 7B.82

The World Heritage Committee,

1.   Having examined Document WHC-12/36.COM/7B,

2.   Recalling Decision 34 COM 7B.93, adopted at its 34th session (Brasilia, 2010),

3.   Takes note of the measures established by the State Party to ensure the monitoring of the state of conservation of the property, as well as its protection and management, in particular the institution of the World Heritage Bureau of Sighişoara, and encourages it to pursue all the activities undertaken to ensure a good conservation of the Historic Centre of Sighişoara;

4.   Expresses its concern with respect to the development projects mentioned in the report and invites the State Party to prepare and submit to the World Heritage Centre visual impact studies of any restoration or construction project foreseen in the perimeter of the property, in conformity with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines;

5.   Recognizes also the efforts of the State Party in the preparation of a Management Plan, but considers that the current project remains at present insufficient and must involve all the parties concerned in the management of the property in order to become effective, multidisciplinary and far-reaching;

6.   Requests the State Party to submit a final version of the Management Plan to the World Heritage Centre for examination by the Advisory Bodies, prior to its approval by the national authorities;

7.   Also requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre by 1 February 2014, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and on the implementation of the above.