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World Heritage Convention

Decision 43 COM 7B.59
West Lake Cultural Landscape of Hangzhou (China) (C 1334)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/19/43.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 35 COM 8B.25, adopted at its 35th session (UNESCO, 2011),
  3. Welcomes the State Party’s progress towards implementing its recommendations made at the time of the inscription of the property;
  4. Congratulates the State Party for its commitment to mitigating the main negative visual impacts of the Shangri-La Hotel, which were identified and acknowledged at the time of inscription, by removing the 6th and 7th storeys of the building, proposing to paint the building a colour that would blend with the surroundings, and addressing the residual negative impacts by planting trees as a visual shield;
  5. Considers that this transformation has been highly effective, and will be even more so once the trees are planted and grown, and reflects a strong commitment to protect the visual integrity of the property;
  6. Also welcomes the detailed impact assessment processes undertaken with the involvement of experts to define the project and to record its outcomes;
  7. Also considers that it is essential to ensure that Hangzhou City does not spread to meet the slopes of the hills that frame views of West Lake from the causeway and reiterates its recommendations made at the time of inscription that the State Party take measures to:
    1. Strengthen visitor management arrangements,
    2. Maintain the skyline of hills to the north and south as viewed when looking east, and ensure that no encroachment of the city behind those hills is visible from the lake and that all relevant development is subject to Heritage Impact Assessments that consider impact on the property’s attributes of Outstanding Universal Value,
    3. Ensure that the protection in place is adequately applied in practice, so that incremental change does not impact the overall harmony of the landscape;
  8. Also recommends that the State Party ensure that management of the urban setting of the property reflects the 2011 UNESCO Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape and that the monitoring of the impacts of visitors be reflected in the management framework for the property;
  9. 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 implementation of the above, for review by the Centre and the Advisory Bodies.
Decision Code
43 COM 7B.59
States Parties 1
State of conservation reports
2019 West Lake Cultural Landscape of Hangzhou
Decisions adopted during the 43rd session of the World Heritage Committee (Baku, 2019)
Context of Decision