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Tyre

Lebanon
Factors affecting the property in 2019*
  • Ground transport infrastructure
  • Housing
  • Impacts of tourism / visitor / recreation
  • Legal framework
  • Management systems/ management plan
  • Other Threats:

    Insufficient maintenance

Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Need for an international safeguarding campaign (issue resolved)
  • Construction of a tourist complex (land fill of the bay) (issue resolved)
  • Construction project of a large fish market (issue resolved)
  • Construction project of a coastal motorway (issue resolved)
  • Project to build a new tourist marina (issue resolved)
  • Road construction project (issue resolved)
  • Need for a Urban Master Plan for the city
  • Lack of management mechanism (including legislation) 
  • Uncontrolled housing development next to the property
  • Absence of a management plan, unclear property boundaries and legal status on the extent of the property
  • Insufficient legal framework for an efficient buffer such as lack of a maritime protection zone around the seashores of Tyre
  • Management system affected by the shortage of human resources directly leading to insufficient maintenance, vegetation control and fire prevention and lack of consistent preservation plan
  • Transportation Infrastructure: planning of major highway near the property and repeatedly local intentions of the redevelopment of the port
  • Sea-shore environmental local conditions affecting physical fabric, especially soft stone surfaces
  • Insufficient drainage of stagnating waters and uncontrolled surface water flows undermine wall foundations and stability of structures
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds until 2019

Total amount granted: USD 19,173 (1997-2001) for the International Safeguarding Campaign; USD 362,391 (2015-2017) from the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation through the Lebanese Council for Development and Reconstruction (CDR); USD 320,673 from the Lebanese Government for capacity- building exercise

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2019
Requests approved: 4 (from 1986-2001)
Total amount approved : 29,000 USD
Missions to the property until 2019**

2004: Evaluation mission by the UNESCO Office in Beirut; September 2006: UNESCO mission following the 2006 summer conflict; February 2009: Joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission; September 2012: Joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission; February 2017: visit of the property by the World Heritage Centre; October 2018: joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2019

A joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission visited the property in October 2018 (mission report available at http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/299/documents). On 17 January 2019, the State Party submitted a report on the state of conservation of the property, which is also available at the above-mentioned address. A report by the UNESCO Documentation Advisory Service (UDAS) has also been submitted, providing details on progress in implementation of conservation activities through the Baalbek and Tyre Archaeological Project (BTAP).

The 2018 mission report documents progress achieved in response to previous Committee Decisions as follows:

  • The Directorate General of Antiquities (DGA) has established a nationwide staff recruitment programme;
  • A framework document for the Management Plan has been prepared and submitted for review by ICOMOS, proposing strategic actions for the property’s long term conservation;
  • Following a series of international workshops, a practice has been established for cleaning and undertaking surface consolidation of mosaics in situ by local staff;
  • Conservation actions undertaken through the BTAP, within the Cultural Heritage and Urban Development (CHUD) of Tyre program have been reviewed by international ICOMOS experts during workshops held in 2015, 2016 and 2017, through UDAS;
  • Traffic control and access restrictions within the Old City are being addressed through CHUD, including the establishment of an open parking at an area designed as Archaeological Zone in the urban zoning plan, without any threat to archaeological remains;
  • A Strategic Plan is being prepared for the entire traffic organization of the wider region of Tyre/Sour in the context of broader urban development;
  • A survey of underwater archaeological remains is being initiated in order to determine the area to be protected by the marine protective zone;
  • The local site museum is expected to open in 2019, following some delay with implementation of the BTAP conservation and presentation works.
Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2019

The 2018 mission identified shortcomings in the management system of the property, partly resulting from ongoing insufficient staffing resources, leading to lack of maintenance. Management is further hampered by inflexibility in the operational regulations for implementing the BTAP.

Owing to the overall unstable security situation, some legal decisions are pending, including the adoption of a maritime protection zone, which is now undergoing research, and the conclusion of the minor boundary modification request.

The recommendations of the 2018 mission provide a clear course of action. These include the finalization of the Management Plan for the property and its implementation as soon as possible. Preparing this following the approach of the 2011 UNESCO Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape would be valuable in integrating the management plan for the property with the urban development plans in the larger area. In addition, it would be crucial to consider the integration of future CHUD activities within a broader strategic development vision and to address shortcomings in coordination mechanisms between some of the agencies involved, as well as opportunities for improved reporting and consultation with UNESCO and the Advisory Bodies.

Analysis of the current and future traffic situation in Tyre presented in the strategy documents for the future urban development of the Tyre/Sour region confirms previous concerns of the Committee and underlines the need for urban rehabilitation and parking provisions for the Old City to be more closely connected with the entire urban road network. A comprehensive study of the urban road network and planning for the highway is required, including Heritage Impact Assessment (HIA), and integrating the results of geophysical surveys and archaeological investigation. The study should be submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies, in line with previous Committee Decisions.

Open parking has been proposed at the western part of the Al-Bass site within an Archaeological Zone, to compensate for diminished parking space as a result of urban rehabilitation measures within the framework of the CHUD projects. The 2018 mission concluded that there would be no adverse impact on significant archaeological vestiges. The parking will generate funds and the municipality will contribute to the maintenance of the property through vegetation control and fire prevention. The State Party is advised to establish a formal agreement between DGA and the municipality, granting use of the Archaeological Zone for municipal parking, and to submit a complete project proposal to the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies for review before commencing works.

The property lacks a comprehensive overall conservation and presentation strategy that goes beyond single interventions. BTAP activities were conceived as pilot interventions for acquiring knowledge on appropriate conservation methods and techniques suitable for wider application. The establishment of conservation practice for mosaics in situ is a significant achievement, as is the international conference leading to the refinement of conservation procedures. The current focus is on the creation of new visitor trails and the construction of security railings. However, little is being done to coordinate initiatives and to communicate the more recent understanding of the property, its historic urban features and its conservation challenges. There are opportunities to learn from previously installed protective shelters and support structures, and from the re-treatment of archaeological structures restored decades ago at the time of excavation. The approach to partial reconstructions/anastylosis of disassembled archaeological features needs to be reconsidered, with a focus on minimal interventions and protection, including the complete re-burial of the Apollo Shrine, in order to maintain the authenticity of the existing archaeological remains. The 2018 mission identified the need for a system of monitoring to evaluate the efficacy of conservation measures.

It is recommended that the Committee reiterate its request to the State Party to address its previous requests (Decisions 39 COM 7B.54 and 41 COM 7B.83), and request that the recommendations of the 2018 mission are implemented.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2019
43 COM 7B.50
Tyre (Lebanon) (C 299)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/19/43.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Recalling Decisions 37 COM 8B.45, 39 COM 7B.54, and 41 COM 7B.83, adopted at its 37th (Phnom Penh, 2013), 39th (Bonn, 2015) 41st (Krakow, 2017) sessions respectively,
  3. Acknowledges the comprehensive UNESCO Documentation Advisory Services (UDAS) report provided by the State Party on the implementation of actions to address pressing conservation concerns;
  4. Also acknowledges the initiative of the Directorate General of Antiquities (DGA) to improve staffing resources on a national scale, and urges the State Party to provide sufficient resources to the property to ensure regular maintenance in the long term, including vegetation control, fire prevention and the safeguarding of the mosaics, based on successful practices established through the Baalbek and Tyre Archaeological Project;
  5. Taking note of the framework document for the preparation of a Management Plan for the property, encourages the State Party to evaluate the actions it proposes based on the forthcoming ICOMOS review and advice provided through the 2018 Reactive Monitoring mission, and requests the State Party to expedite completion and implementation of the Management Plan;
  6. Also taking note of the 2018 Reactive Monitoring mission, also requests the State Party to implement the mission recommendations, with particular attention to the following:
    1. Ensure that the management structure becomes fully operational by securing adequate resources for implementation of the Management Plan once finalized,
    2. Revise the proposed boundary of the property in accordance with Decision 37 COM 8B.45, identifying a buffer zone and developing regulations and procedures for the protection of the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property, and, submit a Minor Boundary Modification, in line with Paragraphs 107, 164 and Annex 11 of the Operational Guidelines, for review by the Advisory Bodies,
    3. Establish a formal agreement between the primary stakeholders (DGA, Municipality of Tyre) for the creation of municipal parking within the Archaeological Zone and submit the proposed details of this arrangement and design details to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies,
    4. Establish a comprehensive strategy for the property that covers all aspects of documentation, conservation and monitoring, summarizing the knowledge on techniques and procedures in a manual, with an updated Action Plan, as a core component of the future Management Plan for the property, including:
      1. Approaches to improving current maintenance practices concerning vegetation, drainage and sewage control through appropriate preventive measures,
      2. Principles of minimal interventions in the conservation of mosaics and structures as lessons learnt from the pilot projects,
      3. A monitoring protocol to be available for scientific conservation research and to enable evaluation of the efficacy of conservation measures,
      4. A comprehensive presentation strategy for the property to reflect the actual understanding of its values as reflected in the various architectonic technologies and funerary practices of past generations, as well as conservation challenges;
      5. Integration of the Management Plan with urban development plans to manage the pressures of urban development following the approach of the 2011 Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape;
  7. Reiterates its request to the State Party to establish a maritime protection zone around the seashores of Tyre;
  8. Also reiterates its request to initiate an in-depth study of traffic and the urban road network, and to submit this study to the World Heritage Centre for examination by the Advisory Bodies, and reminds the State Party of its obligations to submit, in accordance with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines, details for proposed road and infrastructure projects at the property, including Heritage Impact Assessments (HIA) for the Coastal Highway and other planned major infrastructure projects, in accordance with the ICOMOS Guidance on HIAs for Cultural World Heritage Properties;
  9. Also urges the State Party to implement the Decisions adopted by the World Heritage Committee in particular Decisions 39 COM 7B.54 and 41 COM 7B.83, and with the reporting requirements under the World Heritage Convention;
  10. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2020, 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 45th session in 2021.
Draft Decision: 43 COM 7B.50

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/19/43.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Recalling Decisions 37 COM 8B.45, 39 COM 7B.54, and 41 COM 7B.83 , adopted at its 37th (Phnom Penh, 2013), 39th (Bonn, 2015) 41st (Krakow, 2017) sessions respectively,
  3. Acknowledges the comprehensive UNESCO Documentation Advisory Services (UDAS) report provided by the State Party on the implementation of actions to address pressing conservation concerns;
  4. Also acknowledges the initiative of the Directorate General of Antiquities (DGA) to improve staffing resources on a national scale, and urges the State Party to provide sufficient resources to the property to ensure regular maintenance in the long term, including vegetation control, fire prevention and the safeguarding of the mosaics, based on successful practices established through the Baalbek and Tyre Archaeological Project;
  5. Taking note of the framework document for the preparation of a Management Plan for the property, encourages the State Party to evaluate the actions it proposes based on the forthcoming ICOMOS review and advice provided through the 2018 Reactive Monitoring mission, and requests the State Party to expedite completion and implementation of the Management Plan;
  6. Also taking note of the 2018 Reactive Monitoring mission, also requests the State Party to implement the mission recommendations, with particular attention to the following:
    1. Ensure that the management structure becomes fully operational by securing adequate resources for implementation of the Management Plan once finalized,
    2. Revise the proposed boundary of the property in accordance with Decision 37 COM 8B.45, identifying a buffer zone and developing regulations and procedures for the protection of the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property, and, submit a Minor Boundary Modification, in line with Paragraphs 107, 164 and Annex 11 of the Operational Guidelines, for review by the Advisory Bodies,
    3. Establish a formal agreement between the primary stakeholders (DGA, Municipality of Tyre) for the creation of municipal parking within the Archaeological Zone and submit the proposed details of this arrangement and design details to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies,
    4. Establish a comprehensive strategy for the property that covers all aspects of documentation, conservation and monitoring, summarizing the knowledge on techniques and procedures in a manual, with an updated Action Plan, as a core component of the future Management Plan for the property, including:
      1. Approaches to improving current maintenance practices concerning vegetation, drainage and sewage control through appropriate preventive measures,
      2. Principles of minimal interventions in the conservation of mosaics and structures as lessons learnt from the pilot projects,
      3. A monitoring protocol to be available for scientific conservation research and to enable evaluation of the efficacy of conservation measures,
      4. A comprehensive presentation strategy for the property to reflect the actual understanding of its values as reflected in the various architectonic technologies and funerary practices of past generations, as well as conservation challenges;
      5. Integration of the Management Plan with urban development plans to manage the pressures of urban development following the approach of the 2011 Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape;
  7. Reiterates its request to the State Party to establish a maritime protection zone around the seashores of Tyre;
  8. Also reiterates its request to initiate an in-depth study of traffic and the urban road network, and to submit this study to the World Heritage Centre for examination by the Advisory Bodies, and reminds the State Party of its obligations to submit, in accordance with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines, details for proposed road and infrastructure projects at the property, including Heritage Impact Assessments (HIA) for the Coastal Highway and other planned major infrastructure projects, in accordance with the ICOMOS Guidance on HIAs for Cultural World Heritage Properties;
  9. Also urges the State Party to implement the decisions adopted by the World Heritage Committee in particular Decisions 39 COM 7B.54 and 41 COM 7B.83, and with the reporting requirements under the World Heritage Convention;
  10. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2020, 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 45th session in 2021.
Report year: 2019
Lebanon
Date of Inscription: 1984
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (iii)(vi)
Documents examined by the Committee
SOC Report by the State Party
Report (2018) .pdf
arrow_circle_right 43COM (2019)
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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