1.         Port, Fortresses and Group of Monuments, Cartagena (Colombia) (C 285)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1984

Criteria  (iv)(vi)

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/285/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1988-1999)
Total amount approved: USD 108,800
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/285/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds


Previous monitoring missions


Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Plans to construct a new bridge (issue resolved)

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/285/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2003

Upon request of the Secretariat, and further to information received from various public sources in Colombia over the period February to March 2003, the State Party provided extensive documentation on 12 March 2003, in Spanish, concerning a rehabilitation project for public spaces in the historic centre of Cartagena de Indias. In order to provide for the necessary visitor services, public restroom facilities had been constructed inside the walls of the fortification of Cartagena, at the location of the courtyard at Baluarte de San Juan Bautista, in accordance with Resolution 059 2002 of the Ministry of Culture. The documentation provided by the State Party, including photographs and construction plans, showed the facilities as being finalized. A public debate had raged over the necessity of these facilities in relation to the need to preserve the authenticity and integrity of the site. Supporting letters from ICOMOS-Colombia and the Sociedad Colombiana de Arquitectos stated that the construction project had followed the normative, methodological, historical and technical requirements set by the Dirección del Patrimonio of the Ministry of Culture and that neither the historic values, nor the authenticity of the site had been compromised. However, since the plans foresee the construction of five more restroom facilities within the protected area of the fortifications, public concern over their impact on the authenticity and integrity of the site continues. 

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


Decision Adopted: 27 COM 7B.89

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Taking note of the report provided by the State Party,;

2. Recognizing the need to provide for proper on-site visitor facilities, such as public bathrooms,;

3. Recalling, however, paragraph 56 of the Operational Guidelines, which states that "the World Heritage Committee invites the State Parties to the Convention [...] to inform the Committee, through the UNESCO Secretariat, of their intention to undertake or to authorize in an area protected under the Convention major restorations or new constructions which may affect the World Heritage value of the property",;

4. Commends the State Party for inviting a joint UNESCO-ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission, which took place from 30 May to 3 June 2003, and which concluded that the interventions have not compromised the historic value, nor the authenticity and integrity of the property;

5. Requests the State Party to submit a detailed report to the World Heritage Centre by 1 February 2004 on the state of conservation of the property in order that the World Heritage Committee can examine the state of conservation of the property at its 28th session in 2004.