1.         Fertö / Neusiedlersee Cultural Landscape (Austria,Hungary) (C 772rev)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  2001

Criteria  (v)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger  N/A

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/772/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved: USD 0
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/772/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds


Previous monitoring missions

February 2007: Joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS/IUCN mission, 

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

a) High-rise hotel development;

b) Large-scale heart clinic development.

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/772/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2009

On 21 January 2009, the States Parties jointly provided an updated report on the state of conservation of the property informing about progress made on the implementation of zoning regulations as well as the introduction of supplementary strategies for the development and protection of vernacular buildings in the management plan.

The States Parties indicated that six expert workshops were held during 2008 that concluded with the drafting of new Construction Guidelines “Criteria for Building within the World Heritage Site”, which were approved by the Austrian authorities. As part of the exercise, an additional zone was established aiming at protecting important views outside the buffer zone (a so-called “sight protection zone”).

The Austrian authorities further established an Advisory Board with representatives from different administrative levels in Austria as well as observers from the Hungarian authorities. Based on the new Construction Guidelines, this Advisory Board has the role to review any project likely to have major impact on the property.

The Austrian State Party further informed that construction works of the hotel project in Parndorf have started with the agreed-upon height of 47.2m. The controversial construction project of a heart clinic in Winden was abandoned.

The Hungarian authorities expressed their support to the above-mentioned Construction Guidelines while also stating that the guidelines will not be applied to the Hungarian part of the property due to already existing classifications and regulations. They further informed that in 2008 the Hungarian Parliament amended the Act on the National Spatial Plan with the regional classification of “Zone of Cultural Heritage Sites”, covering World Heritage properties as well as sites on the Hungarian Tentative List. It is further planned to prepare a specific World Heritage act for integration into Hungarian legislation.


The World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS, although welcoming the principle of Construction Guidelines for the property, are concerned by some of the details. The guidelines dictate the maximum height and volume for new building according to various designated zones. In some cases the maximum height would appear to be considerably greater than that of existing traditional buildings – up to 14m in villages. Although the guidelines call for the limits of the existing settlements to be respected, there are also categories of buildings in isolated areas outside villages and in meadows. For these the maximum height is 10 m outside the villages and 7m in the open wetland zone. In the setting of the property, the height limit is 25m. Furthermore, the zones seem to have been delineated according to the natural aspects of the landscape (National Park, priority areas for nature) and the view points of tourists, rather than being based on the attributes of the cultural landscape that carry Outstanding Universal Value. It is suggested that the heights and zones should be reviewed.

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


Decision Adopted: 33 COM 7B.92

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-09/33.COM/7B,

2. Recalling Decision 31 COM 7B.107, adopted at its 31st session (Christchurch, 2007),

3. Notes with appreciation the States Parties' joint efforts and activities and welcomes the fact that the controversial heart clinic project has been abandoned;

4. Also notes the development of Construction Guidelines, however expresses its concern that these appear to be encouraging development that is larger in scale than the existing vernacular buildings and would allow development in inappropriate locations and may impact on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property;

5. Requests the State Party of Austria to re-assess the Construction Guidelines to ensure that they respect the form and scale of traditional buildings, do not encourage development on open land, and are based on zoning that reflects the attributes of this cultural landscape, and submit them to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies.