Decision : 31 COM 8B.52
Nomination of natural, mixed and cultural properties to the world heritage list - Central University City Campus of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma Autónoma de México (UNAM)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Documents WHC-07/31.COM/8B and WHC-07/31.COM/INF.8B.1,

2. Inscribes the Central University City Campus of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), Mexico, on the World Heritage List on the basis of criteria (i), (ii) and (iv);

3. Adopts the following Statement of Outstanding Universal Value:

The Central University City Campus of UNAM bears testimony to the modernization of post-revolutionary Mexico in the framework of universal ideals and values related to access to education, improvement of quality of life, integral intellectual and physical education and integration between urbanism, architecture and fine arts. It is a collective work, where more than sixty architects, engineers and artists worked together to create the spaces and facilities apt to contribute to the progress of humankind through education.  

The urbanism and architecture of the Central University City Campus of UNAM constitute an outstanding example of the application of the principles of 20th Century modernism merged with features stemming from pre-Hispanic Mexican tradition. The ensemble became one of the most significant icons of modern urbanism and architecture in Latin America, recognized at universal level. 

Criterion (i): The Central University City Campus of UNAM constitutes a unique example in the 20th century where more than sixty professionals worked together, in the framework of a master plan, to create an urban architectural ensemble that bears testimony to social and cultural values of universal significance.

Criterion (ii): The most important trends of architectural thinking from the 20th century converge in the Central University City Campus of UNAM: modern architecture, historicist regionalism, and plastic integration; the last two of Mexican origin.

Criterion (iv): The Central University City Campus of UNAM is one of the few models around the world where the principles proposed by Modern Architecture and Urbanism were totally applied; the ultimate purpose of which was to offer man a notable improvement in the quality of life.

Since all the fundamental physical components of the original ensemble remain and no major changes have been introduced, the property satisfies the required conditions of integrity and authenticity. The campus conserves unaltered its essential physical components: urban design, buildings, open spaces, circulation system and parking areas, landscape design and works of art. . Functions have not changed over time. The existing physical components therefore express the historic, cultural and social values of the ensemble, and its authenticity of design, materials, substance, workmanship and functions.

At the national level, the Central University City Campus of UNAM was listed as a National Artistic Monument in July 2005, in the framework of the Federal Law on Archaeological, Artistic and Historic Monuments and Zones. At the local level, the UNAM Campus and the Olympic stadium are defined as heritage conservation zones in the framework of the District Programme for Urban Development (1997) of Coyoacán Delegation, one of the administrative units of Mexico City. Since the University is an autonomous organization, it has its own offices in charge of maintenance and conservation of the campus. Among them, the Governing Plan for University City (1993) rules the future growth of the University facilities, uses of land and maintenance of the campus. The Integral Plan for the University City (2005) constitutes the current management plan for the campus. The physical components are in a good state of conservation, and the process of ageing is controlled by means of plans of maintenance and preservation of both free and constructed spaces. The Office for Special Projects of UNAM developed and implements the Integral Plan for the University City (September 2005). With the aim of implementing and monitoring the Plan, the University will create the University City Management Programme (PROMACU).

4. Requests the State Party to promote a closer relationship between the University and the government of the Federal District, in order to ensure better management of the property and its buffer zone and the appropriate development of neighboring urban areas, so that potential risks to the campus can be better controlled.

5. Recommends that the State Party give consideration to the following:

     a) The University authorities should formalize the Programme of Management of the University City (PROMACU) as a means of ensuring the proper implementation of the Integral Plan for the University City;

     b) The University authorities should also implement strategies for improved arrangements and information for visitors, in order to ensure a better interpretation of the Outstanding Universal Value of the campus;

     c) The identification of parts of the University with authentic interiors, for their preservation;

6. Recommends the State Party to consider a possible renomination of this property also under criterion (vi);

7.   Requests that ICOMOS in consultation with DoCoMoMo and other relevant experts prepare an evaluative framework for a thematic study on Modern Architecture.





 Original Decision Document
Context of Decision
Themes: Inscriptions on the World Heritage List
States Parties: Mexico
Year: 2007
Decision Code: 31 COM 8B.52