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Kizhi Pogost

Russian Federation
Factors affecting the property in 2018*
  • Housing
  • Impacts of tourism / visitor / recreation
  • Interpretative and visitation facilities
  • Land conversion
  • Management activities
  • Management systems/ management plan
  • Marine transport infrastructure
  • Other Threats:

    Structural integrity issues at the Church of the Transfiguration

Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Structural integrity issues at the Church of the Transfiguration
  • Lack of an integrated management plan addressing the overall management of the World Heritage property
  • Tourism development pressures including development of infrastructures 
International Assistance: requests for the property until 2018
Requests approved: 2 (from 1992-2001)
Total amount approved : 38,540 USD
Missions to the property until 2018**

1992, 1993, 1994, 2011: ICOMOS missions; 2002: UNESCO/ICOMOS/ICCROM mission and on-site workshop; 2007, 2010 and 2013: World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring missions; July 2014 and October 2015: ICOMOS Advisory missions; March 2018: ICOMOS Advisory mission

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2018

On 13 December 2017, the State Party submitted a detailed state of conservation report, which is available at http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/544/documents/ and provides update information on the following issues:

  • Restoration work of the Church of the Transfiguration has continued in accordance with the approved restoration project, supporting ICOMOS guidelines and recommendations. As a result, the domes have been dismantled and are being restored, the iconostasis of the heaven ceiling has been restored and the walls of the Church have been strengthened with traditional binding posts;
  • Following the ICOMOS technical review of the Management Plan, the plan was substantially revised and subsequently approved by the Coordination Council for the property "Kizhi Pogost", all stakeholders including the local communities, and the Government of Karelia in August 2017;
  • No further works for reconstruction of the museum entrance have been undertaken. The museum entrance development project has been revised taking into account all comments and suggestions by ICOMOS and the World Heritage Centre. The revised study of the project and Heritage Impact Assessments (HIAs) were technically reviewed in December 2017 and will be resubmitted. The reuse of existing facilities and removal of temporary buildings located in the visual corridor of the architectural ensemble are some of the main outcomes of the study;
  • The museum has developed its own excursion programmes and purchased small boats and hovercrafts to offer tours around the island and thereby improve the flow of tourists around the buffer zone. A commission set up in 2014 oversees monitoring and compliance with land-use.
Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2018

The State Party has made noteworthy progress with the state of conservation of the property thanks to the dedication and efforts invested by people from the Department of the Ministry of Culture, museum administration and staff, as well as engineers, architects and craftsmen. The ICOMOS Advisory mission, carried out in March 2018, reviewed the technical aspects of the restoration project of the Church of the Transfiguration and assessed the management plan and visitor management strategy, notably projects related to the development of the entrance zone.  

The restoration project of the Church of the Transfiguration has now entered its final stages as the 1st, 2nd and 3rd tiers have been completely dismantled and taken to the restoration complex for restoration.  Since the 2015 mission, restoration and conservation of the church interior has also been carried out on the decorated rafters of the heaven ceiling, as well as the royal doors. The 2018 ICOMOS Advisory mission was satisfied with the overall progress made and the very high quality of workmanship.

The mission team noted that the challenges of structural reinforcement of the building had been addressed positively in the direction of earlier recommendations. The mission made further detailed recommendations related to vertical movements of the binding posts, the support of the ring for the heaven ceiling, the iconostasis, and surface treatment.

The mission was presented with plans for the restoration of the Church of the Intercession. The mission recommended that the same principles for restoration should apply to this project as have been applicable for the current project. It was noted that the timber of the Church is in a very bad condition and ways need to be considered as to how to minimize new interventions. Details of alternative proposals should be submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies before a decision is taken.

Concerning the Museum entrance project, the mission has reviewed the proposed Kizhi Open Air Museum entrance area on Kizhi Island zone B, and in particular the proposed buildings (the restoration and storage complex, the reconstruction of the warehouse building and the architectural and ethnographic sector “Northern Vepsians”) as regards their location, size and construction materials. The mission underlines that the development plans for zones A and B will reach the maximum permissible level of development of administrative and other service buildings on the island. Therefore, it is recommended that the Committee request the State Party not to permit any further new constructions in the future.

With regard to the revision of the Management Plan and its implementation, the State Party has made substantial efforts to respond to the Committee recommendations. However, the ICOMOS Advisory mission noted that the provision of tourist services should be combined with the development of the rest of the traditional economy  ̶  cultivation of land, development of traditional handicrafts, etc., in view to create the conditions for the long-term settlement of the inhabitants based on mixed economic sources.

It is recommended that the Committee reiterate its request to the State Party to focus on the establishment of sufficient protection measures both within and outside the buffer zone, including land-use and non-constructive zones legislation, as well as to strictly apply fluvial regulation in order to prevent any impact on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2018
42 COM 7B.28
Kizhi Pogost (Russian Federation) (C 544)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/18/42.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 40 COM 7B.58, adopted at its 40th session (Istanbul/UNESCO, 2016),
  3. Acknowledges the considerable progress made with the the restoration of fabric and interior of the Church of the Transfiguration, the high quality of workmanship and the satisfactory implementation of previous recommendations;
  4. Welcomes the revisions made to the entrance zone project;
  5. Takes note of the recommendations of the ICOMOS Advisory mission to the property made in relation to the restoration works of the Church of the Transfiguration and requests the State Party to implement them;
  6. Notes that the restoration of the Church of the Intercession is being planned and recommends that the same principles for restoration should apply to this project as has been applicable for the project of the Church of the Transfiguration; further notes that the timber of the Church of the Intercession is in a very bad condition and that a robust methodology should be developed to minimize new interventions and also requests that details of alternative proposals should be submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies before a decision is taken on the way forward;
  7. Notes that the State Party has proceeded with a new Museum entrance project and, in order that acceptable accommodation be provided on the island, has planned a number of other developments such as the restoration and storage complex, the reconstruction of the warehouse building and the architectural and ethnographic sector “Northern Vepsians”, for which Heritage Impact Assessments have been submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Body ICOMOS;
  8. Further requests the State Party not to permit any further new constructions in the future since the development plans for zones A and B of the new Museum entrance project will reach the maximum permissible level of development of administrative and other service buildings on the island;
  9. Reiterates its request to the State Party to focus on the establishment of sufficient protection measures both within and outside the buffer zone, including land-use and non-constructive zones legislation, as well as to strictly apply fluvial regulation in order to prevent any impact on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property;
  10. Notes with satisfaction the efforts made by the State Party to revise the Management Plan (2018-2026) and submit it for approval to the Coordination Council for the World Heritage property “Kizhi Pogost” management, stakeholders and the Regional Government of the Republic of Karelia and requests furthermore the State Party, and the Museum as managing administration of the property, to ensure that the provision of tourist services be combined with the development of traditional economy activities such as cultivation of land, development of traditional handicrafts, , in view to create the conditions for the long-term settlement of the inhabitants;
  11. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2019, 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 43rd session in 2019.
Draft Decision: 42 COM 7B.28

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/18/42.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 40 COM 7B.58, adopted at its 40th session (Istanbul/UNESCO, 2016),
  3. Acknowledges the considerable progress made with the the restoration of fabric and interior of the Church of the Transfiguration, the high quality of workmanship and the satisfactory implementation of previous recommendations;
  4. Welcomes the revisions made to the entrance zone project;
  5. Takes note of the recommendations of the ICOMOS Advisory mission to the property made in relation to the restoration works of the Church of the Transfiguration and requests the State Party to implement them;
  6. Notes that the restoration of the Church of the Intercession is being planned and recommends that the same principles for restoration should apply to this project as has been applicable for the project of the Church of the Transfiguration; further notes that the timber of the Church of the Intercession is in a very bad condition and that a robust methodology should be developed to minimize new interventions and also requests that details of alternative proposals should be submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies before a decision is taken on the way forward;
  7. Notes that the State Party has proceeded with a new Museum entrance project and, in order that acceptable accommodation be provided on the island, has planned a number of other developments such as the restoration and storage complex, the reconstruction of the warehouse building and the architectural and ethnographic sector “Northern Vepsians”, for which Heritage Impact Assessments have been submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Body ICOMOS;
  8. Further requests the State Party not to permit any further new constructions in the future since the development plans for zones A and B of the new Museum entrance project will reach the maximum permissible level of development of administrative and other service buildings on the island;
  9. Reiterates its request to the State Party to focus on the establishment of sufficient protection measures both within and outside the buffer zone, including land-use and non-constructive zones legislation, as well as to strictly apply fluvial regulation in order to prevent any impact on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property;
  10. Notes with satisfaction the efforts made by the State Party to revise the Management Plan (2018-2026) and submit it for approval to the Coordination Council for the World Heritage property “Kizhi Pogost” management, stakeholders and the Regional Government of the Republic of Karelia and requests furthermore the State Party, and the Museum as managing administration of the property, to ensure that the provision of tourist services be combined with the development of traditional economy activities such as cultivation of land, development of traditional handicrafts, , in view to create the conditions for the long-term settlement of the inhabitants;
  11. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2019, 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 43rd session in 2019.
Report year: 2018
Russian Federation
Date of Inscription: 1990
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (i)(iv)(v)
Documents examined by the Committee
SOC Report by the State Party
Report (2017) .pdf
arrow_circle_right 42COM (2018)
Exports

* : 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”).

** : All mission reports are not always available electronically.


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