1.         Complex of HuĂ© Monuments (Viet Nam) (C 678)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1993

Criteria  (iv)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger  N/A

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/678/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1994-1994)
Total amount approved: USD 128,000
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/678/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds

N/A

Previous monitoring missions

N/A

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/678/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 1996

Since the launch of the first international safeguarding campaign in 1981, the Vietnamese authorities have come to realize the cultural and economic interest in preserving the urban and landscape heritage of the Imperial City of Hué. The creation of a Centre for the Conservation of Historic Monuments and the approval of the Government, in July 1991, of an initial protection perimeter accompanied the inscription in December 1993 of the site on the World Heritage List.

This inscription encouraged donations and international patronage, in particular from Japan and France, in addition to the Vietnamese financial effort. At present this support contributes to the restoration of the monuments, the treatment of the wood against termites, and to setting up a geographical data system. The procedure is therefore well under way, in spite of some weaknesses in the preservation techniques used.

The site of Hué is also a university and tourist city spreading over a territory of more than one million inhabitants. The Master Plan of 1993 organized its development by decentralizing the economic activity outside the perimeter of protection and by maintaining a demographic balance between city and countryside. However, for want of solid regulations, this planning remains at the mercy of the hazards of private, industrial and tourist industry investment projects. Moreover, the Vietnamese proposal currently under study for the deviation of Hué's route No. 1 would have it cross the listed sector. It is necessary to study the inscription of the bypass within the site, its landscaping treatment and the land use regulations on both sides of the future axis.

UNESCO appreciates the initiative for bilateral cooperation between the Institute for Development and Strategy of Hanoi (DSI) and the Delegation for Territorial and Regional Development (DATAR) of France in developing the pilot-project for the development of the metropolitan area of Hué - Da Nang. The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), is analyzing the territorial interests of the region of Central Viet Nam.

The most urgent intervention concerns the city itself with priority given to the quarters which are in proximity to the listed monuments (prohibited building zone 1). The building regulations of zones 2 and 3 should be defined: everything remains to be stipulated concerning the height and the size of the building, the width and the development of the streets, as well as the commercial and residential use of the ground. The reference to common law is one of the conditions for the application of the regulations.

A harmonization of the urban development and the procedure for heritage preservation would be, for the inhabitants, the next step towards assuming the rehabilitation of their identity.

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

The Bureau may wish to adopt the following text and transmit it to the Committee for noting:

"The Bureau requests UNESCO to support the Vietnamese authorities to re-evaluate the land use and building regulations concerning the World Heritage protected area and the buffer zones (Zones 2 and 3) as well as to participate in the reflection on the various road construction/upgrading projects currently under consideration. The Bureau also urges the Vietnamese Government to strengthen its inter-ministerial coordination to ensure that the much-needed infrastructural development projects do not undermine the World Heritage value of the site, and to continue their on-going collaboration with the Governments of France and Japan to reflect on the safeguarding needs of the World Heritage Site of Hué within the context of the regional development scheme."

Decision Adopted: 20 COM VII.D.70

VII.70 The Monuments of Hue (Vietnam)

The inscription on the World Heritage List encouraged donations and international patronage, in addition to substantial financial allocation by the Vietnamese Government for conservation activities. At present this support contributes to the restoration of the monuments, the treatment of the wood against termites, and to setting up a geographical information data system.

The Secretariat reported that considerable urban and regional development for the area of Hue - Da Nang is being planned and major infrastructural works are being considered with a possible negative impact on the World Heritage site of Hue. The Centre maintains contact with the Institute for Development and Strategy of Hanoi (DSI) and the French Delegation for Territorial and Regional Development (DATAR), as well as wi th the Japan International Cooperation Agency, which are all involved in the development of the metropolitan area of the Hue - Danang region, to ensure that the development plan takes into consideration the conservation of Hue.

To ensure both conservation and development of this living historic city, land use and building regulations need to be urgently re-evaluated and improved, especially with regard to the height and volume of the buildings, the width and development of the streets, as well as the commercial and residential land use in the buffer zones (Zones 2 and 3) surrounding the monument zone (Zone 1).

The Representative of ICOMOS expressed concern over the plan to upgrade the road cutting across the World Heritage protected area of Hue into a highway. The Secretariat stated that the Vietnamese authorities have repeatedly assured UNESCO, through the Hue-UNESCO Working Group on the International Safeguarding Campaign, that the planned highway will not cut through the site, nor have a negative impact on the World Heritage value of Hue. The Secretariat, however, expressed concern over the difficulty in keeping up-to-date on the numerous major infrastructural development projects in Vietnam of importance to the entire region.

The Bureau noted the Secretariat's report and requested UNESCO to support the Vietnamese authorities to re-evaluate the landuse and building regulations concerning the World Heritage protected area and the buffer zones (Zones 2 and 3) as well as to participate in the reflection on the various road construction/upgrading projects currently under consideration. The Bureau also suggested that the Vietnamese Government strengthen its interministerial coordination to ensure that the much-needed infrastructural development projects do not undermine the World Heritage value of the site, and to continue their on-going collaboration with the Governments of France and Japan to reflect on the safeguarding needs of the World Heritage Site of Hue within the context of the regional development scheme.