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Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works

Chile
Factors affecting the property in 2021*
  • Management systems/ management plan
  • Wind
  • Other Threats:

    Extremely fragile nature of the industrial buildings; Lack of maintenance over the past 40 years.

Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Management systems/management plan
  • Wind
  • Extremely fragile nature of the industrial buildings that were constructed using local materials such as timber for frames, corrugated iron sheets for roofs and some walls, in addition to stucco and lightweight construction
  • Lack of maintenance over the past 40 years as well as vandalism at the property
  • Corrosion of metal cladding and dismantlement of some of the structural elements
  • A few buildings such as the Leaching House are liable to structural collapse if no support is given
  • Damage caused by earthquakes and the wind (damages due to the 2014 earthquake addressed)
Threats for which the property was inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger
  • Extremely fragile nature of the industrial buildings
  • Lack of maintenance for 40 years
  • Vandalism due to looting of re-usable materials
  • Damage caused by the wind
Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger

Adopted, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5014

Corrective Measures for the property

Adopted, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5014

Timeframe for the implementation of the corrective measures
Adopted, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/5014
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds until 2021

Total amount granted: USD 30 000 for the development of Risk Management Plans in Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works, Historic Quarter of the Seaport City of Valparaíso and Rapa Nui National Park financed by the German Foreign Office in 2018

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2021
Requests approved: 3 (from 2007-2015)
Total amount approved : 135,000 USD
Missions to the property until 2021**

May 2007: World Heritage Centre site visit; April 2010: Joint World Heritage Centre / ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission; November 2018: ICOMOS Advisory mission

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2021

On 2 December 2020, the State Party submitted a report on the state of conservation, which is available at http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1178/documents/. The State’s Party report provides an assessment of the activities and measures undertaken, regarding the implementation of the pending corrective measures and recommendations stated in the 2018 ICOMOS Advisory mission report, as follows:

  • The State Party provided direct support to national World Heritage properties through the ‘Social Program for World Heritage Sites’, implemented consecutively through the years (2018-2021);
  • The Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage continued its work to strengthen heritage institutions in the country’s regions through Regional Ministerial Secretaries of Culture, Arts and Heritage; the National Service for Cultural Heritage’s Regional Directorates; and the National Monuments Council’s Regional Technical Offices;
  • Legal work to amend the Law on National Monuments is ongoing, with the aim of establishing a Law on Cultural Heritage informed by a holistic and updated approach on heritage conservation;
  • The updated Management Plan 2021-2025 was completed and submitted, taking into account the recommendations addressed in the 2018 ICOMOS Advisory mission report;
  • Formulation of the Disaster Risk Management Plan for the property was completed within the framework of the project “Strengthening Disaster Risk Management at Three World Heritage Properties in Chile,” implemented by the National Service for Cultural Heritage and the Federico Santa María Technical University, with the financial support of the government of Germany;
  • The “Priority Interventions Program” (PIP) was fully implemented, including the intervention of the Santa Laura Foundry, which constituted the last pending intervention;
  • Conservation activities were undertaken, in line with the Conservation Plan and PÏP, such as works carried out at the Leaching Plant, Iodine House, and Santa Laura Foundry; and the formulation of designs for the Hospital, Quarters for Unmarried Workers, Houses for Professional Staff and Humberstone Coeducational School No. 35;
  • Other activities were reported regarding museum exhibitions, including four new permanent exhibitions: the Memorial House of the Pampinos and Pampinas, the General Store, the One-room house of the Oblate Fathers and the San Mauricio School.
Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2021

The continuous work of the Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage, created in 2018 to strengthen heritage institutions and technical teams in the country’s regions is noted, with the support of Ministerial Secretaries of Culture, Arts and Heritage; the National Service for Cultural Heritage’s Regional Directorates and the National Monuments Council’s Regional Technical Offices. 

In its report, the State Party has addressed advances made in all the recommendations for the property contained in the 2018 Advisory mission report, having completed and submitted the updated Management Plan 2021-2025 , taking into account the recommendations underlined by the Advisory mission. ICOMOS will undertake a Technical Review of the Management Plan that will be transmitted to the State Party.

Conservation activities have been reported in the framework of the Conservation Plan and completion of the PIP, such as the intervention of the Santa Laura Foundry, which constituted the last pending intervention, as well as refacing works at the Santiago Humberstone Hospital, conservation works at the Iodine House; restorations of the Quarters for Unmarried Workers; restorations at the Coeducational School No. 35; structural reinforcement works at the Houses for Professional Staff, Works at the Leaching Plant, among others.

Furthermore, the Disaster Risk Management Plan for the property has been completed and submitted in the framework of the project “Strengthening Disaster Risk Management at Three World Heritage Properties in Chile,” implemented through a collaboration agreement between the National Service for Cultural Heritage and the Federico Santa María Technical University, with the financial support of the government of Germany. ICOMOS will also provide a Technical Review of the Disaster Risk Management Plan for transmission to the State Party.

It is also noted that legal work continues on the project to amend the Law on National Monuments, with the aim of establishing a Law on Cultural Heritage informed by a holistic and up-to-date approach to heritage conservation. The continuous implementation of the ‘Social Program for World Heritage Sites’ (2018-2021), which provides direct grants and technical assistance to site managers of national world heritage properties, should be welcomed, particularly in the current context of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the State Party should be encouraged to continue providing this support as much as possible.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2021
44 COM 7B.166
Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works (Chile) (C 1178bis)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/21/44.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 43 COM 7A.49, adopted at its 43rd session (Baku, 2019),
  3. Welcomes the efforts undertaken for the conservation and sustainable management of the property, and takes note with satisfaction of the measures carried out by the State Party to finalize the Management Plan 2021-2025 and pending conservation measures/actions as addressed in the 2018 ICOMOS Advisory mission report;
  4. Encourages the State Party to continue its efforts to strengthen heritage institutions in the country’s regions, and to establish a Law on Cultural Heritage with an updated approach to heritage conservation in order to ensure the conservation of the World Heritage property;
  5. Requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2022, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for review by the Advisory Bodies.
Draft Decision: 44 COM 7B.166

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/21/44.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 43 COM 7A.49, adopted at its 43rd session (Baku, 2019),
  3. Welcomes the efforts undertaken for the conservation and sustainable management of the property, and takes note with satisfaction of the measures carried out by the State Party to finalize the Management Plan 2021-2025 and pending conservation measures/actions as addressed in the 2018 ICOMOS Advisory mission report;
  4. Encourages the State Party to continue its efforts to strengthen heritage institutions in the country’s regions, and to establish a Law on Cultural Heritage with an updated approach to heritage conservation in order to ensure the conservation of the World Heritage property;
  5. Requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2022, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for review by the Advisory Bodies.
Report year: 2021
Chile
Date of Inscription: 2005
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (ii)(iii)(iv)
Danger List (dates): 2005-2019
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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