cultural heritage and urban planning

In line with the objectives of Afghanistan’s National Programme for Culture & Creative Economy - NPCE - the Government of Italy, through the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation - IADC, has been active for the conservation of Afghanistan’s rich cultural heritage since 2010, with interventions aimed at the conservation, protection and enhancement of cultural heritage in Bamiyan and Herat. The NPCE defines how the Country should use its rich cultural heritage to build a national identity and sense of citizenship that rises above local enmities and perceived differences.

Particular attention is given to the Bamiyan Valley, which has been included in the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2003 as “Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley”, as well as in the List of World Heritage in Danger. Currently the IADC manages a portfolio of 6 MEUR with three programmes supporting the Afghan Government, through UNESCO and the University of Florence, in its efforts to protect and manage the archaeological and cultural landscape of the area. The programmes use an integrated approach which, conceiving the site in its socio-economic and environmental context, combines urban planning, direct conservation management and enhancement actions.

The programmes include the drafting of a management plan which will contribute to the removal of the Bamiyan Valley from the World Heritage in Danger List, and the establishment of an Archaeological Park which will contribute to protecting and enhancing this unique heritage, promoting local employment, and encouraging economic growth by providing space and context for tourism-related industries. The project implemented by the University of Florence, among other achievements, has facilitated the development of The Strategic Master Plan of Bamiyan Valley. This has been endorsed by H.E. President Ghani during a meeting of the High Development Council on the 10th November 2018, it is therefore an Urban Planning Guide for the Bamiyan Valley.

In the framework of the Bamiyan program, Italy is presently also focusing, through UNESCO, on the preservation and use of the remains of the ancient city of Shar-e Gholghola.

All the projects are strengthening local and national awareness by means of public services offering accessible information about the historical and cultural significance of the Bamiyan sites. IADC also see these projects as means of improving the standards of Afghan institutions and staff through training and technical assistance, as well as a chance for job-creation and local development through sustainable tourism.

Below the ongoing projects:

11704Preservation and Enhancement of the Bamiyan Valley for Culture-Oriented Sustainable Development
11060AID - Integrated Project for the Theoretical and Experimental Training for Territorial Planning Capacity Development in Afghanistan
11044Local Community Empowerment and Preservation Of Shahr-E-Gholgola, the World Heritage Site In Bamyan