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Tipasa

Algeria
Factors affecting the property in 2021*
  • Deliberate destruction of heritage
  • Erosion and siltation/ deposition
  • Housing
  • Human resources
  • Illegal activities
  • Impacts of tourism / visitor / recreation
  • Management activities
  • Marine transport infrastructure
  • Other Threats:

    Unsuitable restoration techniques, and poor conservation conditions for the archaeological remains

Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Deliberate destruction of heritage: Deterioration of the remains due to vandalism, theft and uncontrolled visitation causing accumulation of rubbish
  • Erosion and siltation/ deposition: Natural degradation caused by littoral erosion, marine salt, rainwater runoff and vegetation covering part of the inscribed sectors
  • Housing
  • Human resources: Lack of capacities for site conservation,
  • Illegal activities: Urbanisation on the outskirts of the property where, in the absence of a defined buffer zone, illegal construction provokes land disputes
  • Impacts of tourism / visitor / recreation
  • Management activities
  • Marine transport infrastructure: Proposed port development
  • Unsuitable restoration techniques, and poor conservation conditions for the archaeological remains
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds until 2021

Total amount granted: USD 9,564 from the Italian Funds-in-Trust

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2021
Requests approved: 6 (from 1989-2001)
Total amount approved : 75,900 USD
Missions to the property until 2021**

1989-1992: 4 UNESCO expert missions; 2002: 2 expert missions and 1 World Heritage Centre mission; March 2006: joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission; April 2017: joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Advisory mission

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2021

On 14 December 2020, the State Party submitted a state of conservation report, which is available at https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/193/documents/. Progress in a number of conservation issues addressed by the Committee at its previous sessions is presented in this report, as follows:

  • The following conservation and maintenance activities were reported:
    • Weekly monitoring is carried out by a multi-disciplinary team; conservation conditions are reported as satisfactory and not deteriorating,
    • Work continues on an inventory of moveable and immovable heritage, and their documentation,
    • Site maintenance has taken place, including vegetation removal and repair of perimeter fences, as well as a risk prevention programme, which includes closing off dangerous site areas and reinforcing security,
    • A partnership agreement was signed with the US Embassy for the protection of Algerian cultural heritage, including Tipasa,
    • New signage and site panels are being installed across the property,
    • A mosaic conservation workshop has been established, with a technical team in place and a manager appointed who will take forward an action plan,
    • A study is being developed to use Villa Angelevy as an interpretation centre,
    • Training in different areas such as conservation of mosaics and cultural heritage protection;
  • Drafting of the Management Plan continues with a first section completed on the property’s values and attributes. Stakeholder consultation is planned to accompany the next stages of work;
  • The urgent situation of the eroded cliff supporting the West Archaeological Park necessitated the works which were carried out in April 2019 to avoid a landslide with potential risk to both people and heritage. The project was provided to the World Heritage Centre and an expert mission is planned to consider long-term solutions when the health situation allows;
  • Rainwater pooling will be addressed in 2021 as soon as the health situation allows for surveying work to be carried out;
  • A collaborative project has been launched to survey the underwater heritage in the immediate vicinity of the property in order to inform plans for extending the buffer zone; this will take place in 2021 when the health situation allows.

Finally, the State Party notes that due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all components of Tipasa have been closed to the public since March 2020.

Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2021

The State Party has demonstrated that efforts are being taken to ensure the on-going conservation and maintenance of the property at all three components, as well as to address outstanding management tasks. However, it is noted that the COVID-19 pandemic situation is delaying many of the collaborative projects underway at the property, as well as some activities that require in-person presence of external specialists. In addition, the closure of the property to the public has affected the income available from ticket sales for future site upkeep.

The delivery of a first section of the management plan is a reassuring sign that drafting is underway and that management efforts will be rooted in a values-based approach focusing on Outstanding Universal Value (OUV). However, additional progress is needed in the near future in order to complete the other sections of the document and with the engagement of stakeholders.

An impact assessment regarding a proposed port development project was appended to the State Party’s 2018 report on the state of conservation. This document integrated discussion of the landscaping of the jetty, as requested in the Committee Decision. However, the proposed project does not appear to have been adjusted to respond to the recommendations provided in the 2017 joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Advisory mission report before any implementation. In addition, it is noted that the impact assessment identifies many significant potential impacts on the OUV with suggestions for mitigation measures and other management actions that should take place. The State Party should be invited to revise the port development project in light of both the 2017 mission’s recommendations and the suggested mitigation measures from the impact assessment.

It is noted that the part of the proposed port development project to reinforce the eroded cliff supporting the West Archaeological Park has already taken place, despite the Committee Decision requesting work to be suspended. The urgent nature of the situation justifies this, as a landslide would have placed both people and heritage at risk, including attributes of OUV. However, additional steps should be taken to improve the final result: an expert consulted by the World Heritage Centre has already provided the State Party with technical feedback on the project that was implemented, with some comments on long-term considerations that now need to be discussed. A joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Advisory mission is foreseen as soon as the health situation allows international travel.

The State Party is addressing the issue of the maritime extension to the buffer zone and is taking a commendable approach based on identifying cultural heritage within the marine area adjacent to the property in order to inform the precise extent of the buffer zone. In this respect, synergies with the 2001 Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage can take place. However, it is noted that the survey work required is on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, a project to resolve the issue of rainwater pooling is also delayed until teams are able to work on site once more.

The Committee had previously asked for a lighting system proposal to be reviewed and it is noted that the State Party did not provide an update on this.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2021
44 COM 7B.124
Tipasa (Algeria) (C 193)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/21/44.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decision 43 COM 7B.41, adopted at its 43rd session (Baku, 2019),
  3. Takes note of the progress being made by the State Party to improve the safety, security, monitoring, maintenance, and documentation of the property, and reiterates its recommendation that the lighting system be reviewed to ensure the most appropriate solution possible is being implemented;
  4. Reiterates its request to the State Party to finalize and provide an electronic copy of the updated Management Plan for review by the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies;
  5. Requests the State Party to revise the proposed port development project in light of the recommendations of the 2017 joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Advisory mission and the mitigation measures suggested in the impact assessment;
  6. Encourages the State Party to invite a joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Advisory mission to the property, in order to advise on long-term solutions for reinforcing the cliff under the West Archaeological Park and related issues within the proposed port development project;
  7. Also encourages the State Party to resume the studies for the maritime extension to the buffer zone and for addressing rainwater pooling as soon as the sanitary situation allows activities to be safely undertaken on site;
  8. Finally requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2023, 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 47th session.
Draft Decision: 44 COM 7B.124

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/21/44.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decision 43 COM 7B.41, adopted at its 43rd session (Baku, 2019),
  3. Takes note of the progress being made by the State Party to improve the safety, security, monitoring, maintenance, and documentation of the property, and reiterates its recommendation that the lighting system be reviewed to ensure the most appropriate solution possible is being implemented;
  4. Reiterates its request to the State Party to finalize and provide an electronic copy of the updated Management Plan for review by the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies;
  5. Requests the State Party to revise the proposed port development project in light of the recommendations of the 2017 joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Advisory mission and the mitigation measures suggested in the impact assessment;
  6. Encourages the State Party to invite a joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Advisory mission to the property, in order to advise on long-term solutions for reinforcing the cliff under the West Archaeological Park and related issues within the proposed port development project;
  7. Also encourages the State Party to resume the studies for the maritime extension to the buffer zone and for addressing rainwater pooling as soon as the sanitary situation allows activities to be safely undertaken on site;
  8. Finally requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2023, 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 47th session in 2024.
Report year: 2021
Algeria
Date of Inscription: 1982
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (iii)(iv)
Danger List (dates): 2002-2006
Documents examined by the Committee
SOC Report by the State Party
Report (2020) .pdf
arrow_circle_right 44COM (2021)
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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