1.         Old City of Dubrovnik (Croatia) (C 95ter)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1979

Criteria  (i)(iii)(iv)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger    1991-1998

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/95/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1985-2003)
Total amount approved: USD 142,053
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/95/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds

Total Amount of the postwar major restoration programme coordinated by UNESCO: USD 80,000,000

Previous monitoring missions

November 1995: fact-finding mission; November 2015: joint UNESCO/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/95/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2016

In November 2015, a joint UNESCO/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission to the property was undertaken and provided a set of recommendations to the State Party. The mission evaluated potential impacts of the following major development projects in the vicinity of the property: Sports and Recreation Centre with a Golf Course and the Bosanka North and Bosanka South Tourist Resorts, new Bosanka 2 settlement and preliminary plans for the recently privatized Hotel Belvedere. The mission also identified five major restoration/interventions and one new construction project within the property: the City Walls; the Pustijerna Site; the Orlando Column; air conditioning units; the historic sewerage system; and a possible landing stage adjacent to the Lazaretto. Two major proposals within the buffer zone of the property were also identified and examined: a possible Northern pedestrian zone and a possible tunnel from port of Gruž with a southern terminal in the North buffer zone.

On 1 December 2015, the State Party submitted a report on the state of conservation of the property, (an executive summary of which is available at: https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/95/documents/), addressing progress made with the implementation of the previous Committee’s decision. Measures implemented to control the development within the property and its buffer zone include:

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

The State Party provided information about the protection of the property and conservation and restoration works undertaken.

The maintenance and management of the City Walls is governed by a contract between the City of Dubrovnik and The Association of Friends of Dubrovnik Antiquities. However, procedures for the implementation of the works by the contractor are not ensuring use of adequate materials and methods for conservation, restoration and maintenance. In order to prevent damage to the City Walls, the State Party should immediately develop guidelines on best conservation practice which should be strictly followed. All restoration/conservation/repair works should also be subject to regular monitoring by the responsible national and local authorities. The terms of the maintenance contract should be carefully revised by introducing transparent procedures, quality control by the State institution in charge of the implementation of the Convention in Croatia and strict rules for conservation, restoration and maintenance. Repair to all parts of the Wall damaged by previous inappropriate interventions should occur as soon as possible to prevent threats to its structural stability.

In relation to specific conservation and development projects:

Furthermore, the Statement of OUV, Management Plan for the property and its buffer zone, as well as a clear framework for management and action should be urgently developed and finalized. Extension of the buffer zone of the property to include the slopes of Mt Srđ is recommended to facilitate more consistent protection.

The Management Plan should address the following issues: the maximum number of tourists in regard to the sustainable carrying capacity of the city and emergency evacuation requirements; a risk-preparedness action plan and an interpretation strategy; management of cruise ships. The extension of the Port of Gruž has decreased the passenger load at the Old Port, but further measures are needed. A legal Act should be envisaged by the State Party to prohibit or limit the passage and mooring of boats, ships and yachts in the coastal area between the old city and Lokrum Island.

It is recommended that the Committee encourage the State Party to implement relevant measures to prevent threats to the property and its buffer zone, as soon as possible.

Decision Adopted: 40 COM 7B.50

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/16/40.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decisions 22 COM VII.17 and 38 COM 7B.25, adopted at its 22nd (Kyoto, 1998) and 38th (Doha 2014) sessions respectively,
  3. Expresses its concern regarding inappropriate conservation works of all parts of the City Walls and requests the State Party to implement all relevant measures, including repairs of damage and development of guidelines on best conservation practices, to prevent any threat to the structural stability of the City Walls, and to ensure strict and regular monitoring;
  4. Endorses the recommendations of the 2015 joint UNESCO/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission to the property and also requests the State Party to give the highest priority to the implementation of its recommendations, notably to:
    1. Develop and submit to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies the Management Plan of the property, including a tourism strategy, legal regulations for cruise ship tourism, identification of the sustainable carrying capacity of the city, a risk-preparedness action plan and an interpretation strategy,
    2. Not to proceed with the Bosanka 2 project, nor to construct the Lazeretto; Quay/Landing Stage with connection to the Old Port,
    3. Submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2017, a minor boundary modification proposal with a view to expanding the buffer zone as recommended by the mission,
    4. Finalize and submit the retrospective Statement of Outstanding Universal Value (SOUV) for the property to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2017, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 41st session in 2017;
  5. Taking note of the current status of the Sports and Recreation Centre with a Golf Course and the Bosanka North and Bosanka South Tourist Resorts project planned for the plateau of Mount Srđ and Bosanka in the vicinity of the property, considers that the Heritage Impact Assessment (HIA) demonstrates that, subject to design refinement, the proposed Sports and Recreation Centre with a Golf Course and the Bosanka North and Bosanka South Tourist Resorts would have an acceptable effect on the OUV of the property, and further requests the State Party to:
    1. Facilitate revisions to the plans and drawings for the project to ensure that no construction is to take place within a minimum distance of 50m from the edges of the plateau,
    2. Continue the dialogue with the Advisory Bodies as the Resorts project progresses,
    3. Submit amended plans for the project to the World Heritage Centre in accordance with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines, for review by the Advisory Bodies before construction works begin,
    4. Submit relevant documentation, including HIAs, to the World Heritage Centre, in line with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines, before any final decisions are made or any works start, for major developments projects within the property, its buffer zone and setting;
  6. Finally requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2017, 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 42nd session in 2018.