On 8February 2010, the World Heritage Centre received a state of conservation report submitted by the State Party, detailing the progress made in implementing Decision 33 COM 7B.136 adopted by the World Heritage Committee at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009) as well as the recommendations made by the Joint WHC/ICOMOS Expert Mission in March 2009, as follows:
a) Reconstruction of the Church Tower Monumental Complex Compañía de Jesús of Quito
The State Party has reported that the World Heritage Committee’s request to help with the works has been communicated to the relevant parties, in accordance with Decision 33 COM 7B.136. However the report further stated that the Compañía de Jesús is “interested in developing a project that considers the intervention of the whole Jesuit Complex and to fundamentally include the bell tower, the study is also to install a conventual hotel and Jesuit Musem”. The State Party indicated that preliminary information of this project was to be submitted in April 2010.
b) Multisectorial evaluation of the architectural complex :
The State Party recorded the signing of an agreement between the Municipality of Quito and the Compañía de Jesús to work on the evaluation of the Jesuit Complex and also in establishing the attributes that contribute to the Outstanding Universal Value of the property. The objectives of this agreement are :(1) to coordinate actions to preserve the physical and historical integrity of the Building of the Compañía de Jesús; and (2) to set up a high level technical team to conduct the necessary integral study, as requested by the World Heritage Committee, that will allow historical buildings of the Compañía de Jesús to be used as a church tower, a hotel and a museum, and included within the existing ensemble.
c) The use of the structure as a bell tower:
The State Party has indicated that an alternative to the previous proposals will be submitted to the World Heritage Centre as soon as studies are concluded in the second semester of 2010.
d) Tourism operation and related security measures
The State Party reports that the terms of reference for contracting the touristic operations studies is being developed by the Municipality of Quito, and has indicated that the final report by the contracting party will be concluded September 2010, which will then be submitted to the World Heritage Centre. There is no indication as to the role of the National Institute for Cultural Heritage (INPC) in this regard.
e) Submission of information as per Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines
Studies for future interventions started in December 2009 will be completed in August 2010 by the Commission. When this is finished, the State Party has indicated that it will be sent to the World Heritage Centre. No documentation has been submitted regarding the decision making process or calendar for planned future interventions.
f) Retrospective Statement of Outstanding Universal Value
From 26 to 28 November 2009 the “Workshop on the preparation of the Retrospective Inventory and Retrospective statement of Outstanding Universal Value (of the properties included on the World Heritage List) and an introduction to the Second Cycle of the Periodic Reporting for the Latin America and Caribbean Region” took place in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The participants (of which Ecuador was represented) were trained on how to develop the Retrospective Statement of Outstanding Universal Value to be submitted by 31 July 2010.
The INPC in collaboration with the Municipality of Quito and FONSAL have signed an agreement to develop the Retrospective Inventory and the Retrospective Statement of Outstanding Universal Value.
g) Definition of the boundaries of the property and related legal frameworks
The State Party reported that it initiated the actualization and definition of limits in December 2009, and this information will be concluded in August 2010. No relevant legal framework has been submitted.
h) National and local responsibilities at the property
The State Party gave very little information on this matter and reported that it is presently reviewing its legal and administrative framework, one of which is the modification of the Culture Law which will establish the basis for the new national culture system. Approval for this Law has been extended to February 2010. No reference has been made as to how the implementation of the World Heritage Convention could be affected.
i) Principles and regulations for interventions on on built heritage
The state of conservation report stated that ordinances will be developed as part of the report on the Retrospective Inventory. The State Party has informed through its report, that these will be submitted to the World Heritage Centre when completed. No established timeframe for completion has been indicated. There is also no mention of the reactive monitoring mission’s recommendation regarding the formulation of a conservation plan for the religious ensembles of Quito.
j) Communication with the World Heritage Committee
The State Party has informed that they will follow established communication mechanisms between the State Party and UNESCO - that of working through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the State Party’s Delegation to UNESCO. No information was included for defining the decision making process on World Heritage matters at the property at the local and national levels.
k) Other Conservation Issues
The State Party has not elaborated on recommendations made by the 2009 reactive monitoring mission with regards to the Legislative Palace. There is also no further information on the ‘Tren Ligero’ public transportation project. No information was received on the inventory of built cultural heritage.
The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies consider that any interventions should be assessed in relation to their potential impacts on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property. For this reason the multisector evaluation of the architectural complex and the evaluation of its attributes should be submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review alongside the draft retrospective Statement of Outstanding Universal Value as a basis for future decision making.
The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies understand that the works have been suspended until the study of the Jesuit Complex has been finalized. No substantial advances were developed in response to the recommendations of the reactive monitoring mission in particular to the decision making process at the property.