The World Heritage Committee,
- Having examined Document WHC/19/43.COM/7B,
- Recalling Decision 42 COM 7B.32, adopted at its 41st session (Manama, 2018),
- Commends the State Party for the design refinements which have occurred to the A303 route Amesbury to Berwick Down upgrading project within the property, including an additional land bridge and longer covered section, as well as the proposed legacy benefits which have been incorporated within the project, and notes the additional investigations and assessments undertaken by the State Party to consider longer tunnel, further land bridge and cut-and-cover options and resulting alternative western portal locations;
- Notes with concern, that although the current scheme, which is now subject to the Development Consent Order (DCO) examination process, shows improvement compared with previous plans, it retains substantial exposed dual carriageway sections, particularly those at the western end of the property, which would impact adversely on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property, especially its integrity, and therefore encourages the State Party to not proceed with the A303 route upgrade for the section Amesbury to Berwick Down project in its current form;
- Urges the State Party to continue to pursue design solutions which reduce further the impact on the cultural landscape and OUV of the property through longer tunnel sections, so that the western portal is located outside the property boundary;
- Requests the State Party to ensure that this present World Heritage Committee Decision (43 COM 7B.95) is conveyed to the Planning Inspectorate, to other decision-makers, to known stakeholders and to the wider community through the DCO online exhibition, and that mechanisms are put in place to ensure that the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS International and the World Heritage Committee continue reviewing and assessing the design plans at the appropriate stages of the project, in conformity with the Operational Guidelines;
- Also requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2020, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 44th session in 2020.