1.         Historic Centre of the City of Salzburg (Austria) (C 784)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1996

Criteria  (ii)(iv)(vi)

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/784/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved: USD 0
For details, see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/784/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds

N/A

Previous monitoring missions

January 2009: joint World Heritage Centre / ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

a) Urban development pressure, high-rise projects;

b) hydroelectric power station Salzburg-Lehen;

c) Train station project outside the buffer zone.

Illustrative material  see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/784/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2011

On 31 January 2011, the State Party submitted a state of conservation report in response to Decision 33 COM 7B.88 that reflected the concerns of the 2009 World Heritage Centre /ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring Mission, related to new developments not respecting the existing urban scale and historic patterns, and to the need to strengthen the coordinated management systems.

a) Hydroelectric power station environmental and cultural assessment

The State Party reports that the Environmental and Cultural Assessment for the hydroelectric power station was prepared and submitted to the World Heritage Centre in 2010. The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies do not consider that the assessment is sufficient and adequate as it does not address the potential impact of the proposed upstream power station on the left bank of the river Salzach, on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property. Instead, the impact assessment describes changes to the river course and its banks over time. The State Party without having received the evaluation of the heritage assessment by the the World Heritage Committee and the Advisory Bodies has already begun construction.

 

b) Integrated approach towards management

The State Party reports that several areas where systematic coordination needs to be improved have been identified. These include nature protection, railway law and general questions concerning traffic. The State Party reports that ICOMOS Austria, at the 6th Austrian World Heritage Sites conference in October 2010, proposed the creation of a unitary consultation mechanism to improve communication. Representatives of the property welcomed the proposed creation of coordination roundtables with representatives of the federal state and the province. The State Party reports that once such an enhanced coordination mechanism is in place, a revision of the management plan will be considered.

c) Other issues

The State Party report includes information on a variety of projects that are either in progress, or planned, at 33 locations within the boundaries of the property and in the surrounding historic town centre, including the train station. These projects are supervised by the Federal Office for Protection of Historical Monuments; the Expert Commission for the Preservation of the Old Town and experts from the City of Salzburg. It remains, however, unclear whether or not Environmental Impact Assessments have been carried out for any of these current or pending projects, as called for in 2009 by Paragraph 5 of Decision 33 COM 7B.88.

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

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies note that the state of conservation report submitted by the State Party deals only superficially with the range of issues identified during the 2009 reactive monitoring mission and, in particular, does not include references to any detailed progress regarding the mission recommendations. No specific progress has been made concerning the strengthening of the management system and the updating of the management plan. Furthermore, it is not clear whether the impact of the numerous on-going projects on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property has been formally assessed. The impact assessment for the Power Station submitted in January 2010 is not sufficient as it does not address potential impacts on the Outstanding Universal Value in a structured way. As it is understood that some work has started, the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies consider that a formal impact assessment needs to be undertaken and submitted as soon as possible to the World Heritage Centre, for evaluation by the Advisory Bodies. 

Decision Adopted: 35 COM 7B.83

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-11/35.COM/7B,

2. Recalling Decision 33 COM 7B.88 adopted at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009),

3. Acknowledges the State Party's efforts to establish clear mechanisms for a coordinated and integrated approach among all decision-making entities and requests the State Party to take the lead in establishing coordination roundtables;

4. Notes with concern that only few recommendations of the 2009 World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission have been addressed and reiterates its request to the State Party to take steps towards implementing all the mission recommendations;

5. Regrets that the submitted impact assessment for the hydroelectric power station did not contain sufficient information to assess the impact on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property and urges the State Party to submit as soon as possible a heritage impact assessment to the World Heritage Centre based on the ICOMOS Guidance for Heritage Impact Assessment for World Heritage cultural properties;

6. Notes the range of projects under way within the boundaries of the World Heritage property and in the surrounding historic town centre and also requests the State Party to undertake heritage impact assessments as necessary and, in line with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines, provide information on major development projects that might impact the Outstanding Universal Value of the property, in line with the ICOMOS Guidance mentioned in paragraph 5 above;

7. Reiterates its request to the State Party to revise the draft management plan, as stated in Decision 33 COM 7B.88;

8. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2013, a report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 37th session in 2013.