Unesco is withdrawing the prestigious title from the British port city of Liverpool over the existence of questionable building projects: they would have damaged the port city’s universal value, the commission says.
A bitter blow to the Beatles’ home: UNESCO has rescinded Liverpool’s designation as a World Heritage site. The decision was made on Wednesday at the 44th session of the World Heritage Committee in the Chinese city of Fuzhou.
It is only the third time in the history of the World Heritage Convention that a cultural or natural site has been denied its prestigious title. However, this decision did not come as a surprise. Liverpool’s World Heritage status has been at risk since 2012 due to “significant interventions” as part of the “Liverpool Waters” construction project.
Once a leading port facility
Liverpool was still the World Heritage Capital in 2008. Since 2004, six sites in the historic center and port area have been inscribed on the World Heritage List. They testify to the city’s development as one of the world’s most important trading centers in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Liverpool has been a pioneer in the development of modern berth technology, transportation systems and port management. The city played a major role in the development of the British Empire.
Loss of World Heritage character
But in recent years, maintenance work has been inadequate, according to UNESCO. In the end, Liverpool’s concession to planning changes and new infrastructure projects in the historic port area as well as the already approved construction of the football stadium at Bramley-Moore-Dock removed the title, and the United Nations justified it. resolution. A UNESCO document stated that Liverpool had long lost the character that led to its designation as a World Heritage Site.
Liverpool is not alone
Contrary to the Liverpool case, the World Heritage Committee at its 44th session decided on a project in Tanzania: Contrary to initial expectations, the Selous Game Reserve, where a dam will be built, has not been withdrawn from its World Heritage status. However, it is still on the list of threatened sites.
The last time Dresden’s Elbe Valley lost its World Heritage site title was in 2009 because the city of Dresden built the Waldschlosschen Bridge. The first title was withheld in 2007 for Oman: the country has reduced the size of the wildlife sanctuary for the rare Arabian Oryx. The Liverpool anthem also applies here: You’ll Never Walk Alone – You’ll Never Walk Alone.
World Heritage Committee meeting
The World Heritage Committee will meet online and on site in Fuzhou, China until July 31, 2021.
The Committee is made up of 21 elected signatories of the World Heritage Convention. As a rule, it annually decides on the inclusion of new cultural and natural sites in the World Heritage List and deals with the status of the inscribed sites.
Due to the pandemic, the conference was postponed last year. The World Heritage List currently includes 1,120 cultural and natural sites in 167 countries. 51 of them are considered threatened.
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