City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto
Factors affecting the property in 2004*
- Ground transport infrastructure
International Assistance: requests for the property until 2004
Total amount approved : 0 USD
Missions to the property until 2004**
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2004
Since December 2002 the World Heritage Centre has received letters from non-governmental organisations and concerned citizens informing about the construction of a partly elevated highway extension of about 54 km (Valdastico Sud) in the vicinity of several Palladian villas. The project provoked a national and international debate as the first Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) disapproved the project, but was then renewed due to political pressure. Despite serious concerns the project was finally approved on 18 December 2002 and will be completed by the end of 2004. As indicated in the nomination dossier and following the criteria under which the property was inscribed, in particular C (ii), the villas are inseparably linked to the Veneto landscape, defining the integrity of the site. The Centre notes that the planning phase for the construction of the highway extension started already in 1970, but unfortunately this was not mentioned in the nomination dossier as one of the factors affecting the property.
Furthermore, the World Heritage Centre was informed about uncontrolled construction development in the Veneto region. The State Party was requested to provide their review and comments on the problems related to the state of conservation of the property, but to date, the World Heritage Centre did not receive any response.
Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2004
28 COM 15B.91
Vicenza, Ville de Palladio
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Recalling paragraph 56 of the Operational Guidelines (2002),
2. Requests the States Party to provide full information to the World Heritage Centre about any construction plans of the highway of Valdastico Sud, which may impact on the integrity and the outstanding universal value of the property;
3. Notes the information provided by the State Party, in particular that the final studies on the highway of Valdastico Sud have not been carried out;
4. Strongly urges the State Party to submit details of any building projects which may impact on the property for consideration by the Committee before commencing any construction;
5. Requests the State Party to prepare a management and conservation plan including measures foreseen to minimize the impact of any development on the integrity of the property;
6. Further requests the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to undertake a mission to the property, in co-operation with the State Party, to assess and evaluate the potential impact on the outstanding universal value of the property;
7. Urges the State Party to submit a detailed technical report on planned or completed projects in the vicinity of the World Heritage property to the World Heritage Centre by 1 February 2005 in order that the World Heritage Committee can examine its state of conservation at its 29th session in 2005.
Draft Decision:28 COM 15B.91
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Recalling paragraph 56 of the Operational Guidelines,
2. Notes that the highway construction of Valdastico Sud is expected to be completed by the end of 2004;
3. Regrets that the States Party did not inform the World Heritage Centre about any construction plans during the nomination process as well as after inscription and did not answer any requests for information;
4. Expresses its serious concern about the adverse effects the construction of the highway extension and the uncontrolled development may have on the outstanding universal value of the Palladian villas and the authenticity of the site;
5. Requests the State Party to prepare a management and conservation plan including measures foreseen to minimize the impact of any development on the integrity of the site;
6. Urges the State Party to submit a detailed technical report on planned or completed projects in the vicinity of the World Heritage property as well as their impact on the universal value of the site to the World Heritage Centre by 1 February 2005 in order that the World Heritage Committee can examine its state of conservation at its 29th session in 2005.
The threats indicated are listed in alphabetical order; their order does not constitute a classification according to the importance of their impact on the property.
Furthermore, they are presented irrespective of the type of threat faced by the property, i.e. with specific and proven imminent danger (“ascertained danger”) or with threats which could have deleterious effects on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (“potential danger”).