The MP considers the modern trends of management of the cultural heritage, as well as the recommendations of the 34th and the 35th sessions of the World Heritage Committee for the elaboration of “overall management strategy” of the property that should provide “institutional reform” and “legislative initiatives”.
The MP also takes into consideration the Recommendation of UNESCO for management of the historic urban landscape, which requires applying ‘new generation of public policies’, in order to encompass in a complex way the urban development, urban expansion, as well as the risks for urban fabric, identity and functionality.
On this basis the MP proposes the following guidelines for the overall management strategy for the property:
Consolidation of the institutional network and monitoring
The 35th session of the World Heritage Committee recommends “institutional frameworks among all stakeholders involved in the management and protection of the Ancient City of Nessebar”. The commendation aims at overcoming the defects of the present system of management of the property – disintegrated, too centralised and concentrated, with contradictions and conflicts among its participants. In order to achieve that aim, the MP proposes to create a partners network that should include all parties interested in the preservation of the outstanding universal value of the property and its sustainable use as compatible tourist destination.
The aim is to achieve commitment and partnership of ‘all levels of government – local, national, international/federal… coordinated from both the institutional and sectorial viewpoints’ (Recommendation of UNESCO).
The MP presents an ORGANIGRAM of the general structure of the proposed institutional network. There are concentrated the following main stakeholders: а) the State – the central bodies with special role of the Ministry of Culture and the NIICH; b) the Municipality; c) the citizens of Nessebar and civil organisations; d) economical bodies with business on the territory. In order to consolidate the institutional network of the above partners, the MP proposes to be executed the following measures.
(1) Enhancing the role of the State
The MP accepts that the preservation of theoutstanding universal value of the property should be state priority, as well as that the role of the State for the management of the property is irreplaceable. Such attitude is set also in the decisions of the 35th session of the World Heritage Committee, insisting on “State Party’s strong commitment”, that should undertake “the necessary measures… as a matter ofurgency” for the conservation of the property. In that spirit the MP proposes measures both for the enhancement of the state functions for the conservation of the property and for de-concentration of some functions in suitable territorial proximity to the property.
For that aim is proposed to establish by special Law a new body for management: National fund and board “Nessebar – World Heritage” that would function on spot with delegated representatives of the central public authorities, in close cooperation and coordination with the Municipal management body. The Fund will contribute to the execution of the state policy for conservation and sustainable use of the property, accumulating, managing and spending financial means and other assets provided by various resources.
In its decisions for other World Heritage sites, the World Heritage Committee encourages such forms of coordination between public bodies for conservation within the institutional management network.
By the adoption of the MP by the Government, the State will take up respective responsibilities related to its implementation. The very adoption of the Plan will be a symbolic ‘State Party’s strong commitment to improve measures in place for conservation of the World Heritage property’ in the sense of the decision of the 35th Session of the World Heritage Committee.
(2) Enhancing the role of the local management
Certain de-centralisation of function is proposed in the field of the cultural heritage (like activities applying the MP; local supervision; monitoring and co-ordination; programming; investment activity). For that, the MP proposes the establishment of the following municipal units:
Body for management “Nessebar World Heritage Site”, within the structure of the Municipal administration with functions of ‘municipal organ for management and control of the activities for conservation of cultural heritage’ (CHA, art. 111, par. 1), as well as for the implementation of the MP;
Expert Council to the Management body;
Municipal information centre on the conservation, use and management of the property, open to the public (Info Centre);
Municipal unit for conservation and restoration “Conservation of the Ancient City” for the execution of conservation activities in the property (Municipal Unit CR).
The MP recommends to be extended the legal rights of the Ancient Nessebar Museum, giving to the latter the responsibility to manage all medieval churches.
During the Public Discussion of the MP were made remarks and recommendations for a more radical decentralisation of functions to the local level of governance (e.g. the latter to be authorised to perform the so called “permitting functions”). The MP does not include these recommendations as they are fundamentally inconsistent with the current legislation in the field of cultural heritage, respectively with the CHA.
(3) Enhancing the role of the population
The MP for the first time draws the attention to the role of the local community of “The Ancient City of Nessebar” in the process of its conservation, use and management. The importance of this role, especially when the property is a living historic town, is verified by the whole international practice. It shows that for a conservation policy to be efficient, it must ensure, through clear rules and public support, the central place of the permanent residents and the owners of real estate in the property, to encourage their commitment and engagement with the aims of the conservation, on the basis of common interests related to the future of the heritage.
Taking into consideration the international experience in this field the MP proposes that public support should be provided to the local population, using various forms for that: stimuli, compensating the restrictions of the protection regimes; target subsidies; tax concessions depending on the individual contribution to the conservation and socialisation of the property; creation of new jobs related to cultural tourism; privileges for applying specific activities (like tour-guiding); assistance for the execution of specific conservation activities, for building of modern technical infrastructure, etc. In this sense are also the recommendations of the World Heritage Committee and the 2010 Mission: to ‘identify financial support to assist home owners in rehabilitation work’.
During the Public Discussion of the MP the forms of public support were complemented with concrete remarks and recommendations of residents and residents’ associations, which were taken into account (e.g. ensuring of priority of local residents regarding the employment, including of owners or owners’ associations as potential beneficiaries in priority axes of Operational Programme “Regional Development”, etc.).
The MP plans the participation of the population and of representatives of civil organisations in the process of taking of decisions for the future of the heritage sites to be carried out through all forms and means of the civic society embedded in the Legislation of the Republic of Bulgaria and the European Union and in the ratified conventions (recommendation from the public Discussion), as well as through the body of local government – the Municipal Council and through the Public Council of the town of Nessebar (established in 2009). It is also proposed future establishing of Public Council for conservation of cultural heritage and other similar public formations.
(4) Activating the participation of business
The MP proposes an interaction with other economic subjects that develop business in the territory of the property, as well as with other partners from the sphere of business, through all forms and mechanisms of public-private partnership. Fundamental condition for the effective participation of business is for it to realise the need to conform to the outstanding universal value of the property, and to adapt to its sustainable use. A symbolic precedent for such an adaptation of business to heritage sites was the stated on the Public Discussion intention of the board of Coca-Cola Bulgaria to develop a unique design of its umbrellas, tents and other advertisement products, adapted to the historic urban landscape of the Ancient City.
In order to strengthen the relations in the partnership institutional network, the MP proposes to be established an open, generally accessible Information System – in correspondence to the recommendation of the 35th session of the World Heritage Committee for ‘improving availability of accessible and use friendly planning information for the public’.
The MP proposes the institutional network to consolidate its possibilities also through enhancement of the contacts with monitoring international organisations (the World Heritage Committee, the UNESCO World Heritage Centre), as well as through ’international ”twinning” exchange‘ with other World Heritage towns – (recommended by the 35th session of the World Heritage Committee).
The MP considers the monitoring as an exceptionally important function in the management system, as it allows following the current implementation of the MP and its impact on the outstanding universal value, the authenticity, and the integrity of the property. The Plan proposes performing three forms of monitoring:
(1) Central monitoring performed by the approving body – the Council of Ministers (CM), respectively the Ministry of Culture (MC), based on: periodic reports of the municipal management body, reports of commissions and bodies of the Ministry of Culture.
(2) Operational local monitoring performed by the municipal management body on the state of the property and the buffer zone. The municipal body shall be obliged to immediately inform the competent state authorities about all ascertained irregularities whose removal is beyond its powers.
(3) International monitoring performed by the World Heritage Committee through the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and its advisory body ICOMOS. This monitoring activity is helped by the annual reports on the state of conservation of the property prepared by the competent central authorities based on the results of the permanent central and local monitoring and submitted to the World Heritage Centre. Besides, these authorities provide the necessary logistic and help conduct the monitoring missions of the Centre regarding the property.
The 35th session of the World Heritage Committee recommends ’legislative initiatives’ for enhancement of the management of the property. The developed within the frames of the MP analysis of the legislative system shows that part of the problems of the property could be solved by applying the present regulation system or after partial alterations or amendments of the latter. But there are problems, difficult to be solved or impossible to be solved without a special law that should refer specifically to “The Ancient City of Nessebar”. That is why the MP, bringing reasonable arguments, proposes to adopt a Law for conservation and development of “The Ancient City of Nessebar”, and by so doing the Bulgarian state will prove convincingly its concern for the only living Bulgarian historic town with World Heritage statute, as well as its high responsibility for the conservation of the heritage of all humankind. The following more important guidelines of action of the Law are considered:
Enhancing the role of the State, through the development of new possibilities for state policy directed to the property: establishment of National fund Nessebar – World Heritage; regulating of obligatory discharging of means from the tourist profits for the benefit of the conservation of the property; determining of the direct responsibilities of the State for the conservation and development of the property (for instance extension of the public state property on heritage sites important for the outstanding universal value); introduction of new management regulations, regulation and control on the tourism activity, etc.;
Providing of public support for the owners of properties in the property through: mechanisms for tax concessions and/or other stimuli related to the implementation of protection prescriptions; state or municipal assistance for the execution of obligatory conservation activities; opportunities for applying for programmes financed by various resources; opening of new working places in the field of conservation and tourism; measures for encouragement of economic initiatives, etc.;
Legalising of specific planning documents, recommended by the World Heritage Committee – such as the Conservation Master Plan.
The implementation of such a specialised law for a living historic town with high cultural value will provide instruments for adequate conservation and management also of other national heritage sites with similar characteristics and problems, through introduction of amendments in the respective active laws.
Various forms of financing
The MP proposes to be used the modern international experience for the application of various forms and resources of financing of the activities related to conservation, use and management of the property. The adoption of the new Law for conservation and development of “The Ancient City of Nessebar” will enrich chances in that field. The following financial resources for the considered programmes, projects and activities are identified: State budget; the proposed National fund “Nessebar – World Heritage”; municipal budget; municipal fund “Culture” (collected from discharging of means from the profits of tourism, taxes, donations, sponsorships, deductions from the resources gathered by “sidewalk right” to perform street trade – recommendation from the Public Discussion, etc.); the funds of the European union (European Regional Development Fund; European Social Fund, etc.), as well as national operation programmes (for that the MP proposes the elaboration of Integrated plan for sustainable urban development); the various donation programmes and target donations (that would be stimulated also through the activities for broad international promotion of the measures of the State and the Municipality for conservation of the property); international aid from the World Heritage Fund after the § 236 – 239 and § 241 of the Guidelines (recommendation from the Public Discussion);public-private partnership; the means coming from owners and users, etc.
The MP also complies with the following recommendation from the Public Discussion: owners of lots in group immovable heritage sites of national significance or World Heritage, or owners’ associations should be included in the project of the Operational Programme “Regional Development” 2014-2020 as potential beneficiaries in the relevant priority axes (respectively operations) related to rehabilitation of buildings and applying measures for energy efficiency.
The successful implementation of the guidelines for financing will guarantee the execution of the planned activities for implementing of the MP.
Education for capacity building
The sessions of the World Heritage Committee, as well as the Mission stress on the necessity for “capacity building” of “all professional staff involved with World Heritage properties”, as well as for “awareness raising”. For that aim, the MP plans system for education and capacity building in the field of cultural tourism, urban management, conservation, promotion and pedagogy of the heritage. Of great importance will be the constant dialogue with the local population in order to deliver knowledge regarding the heritage sites, to suggest compassionate attitude to the cause of their conservation, as well as skills for their sustainable use of common interest.
In conclusion to the part of the MP “Enhancement of Management” it must be noted that during the Public Discussion of the Plan were made many other concrete remarks and practical recommendations in this sphere, which confirm the proposed strategy but do not correspond to the level of the Plan and to its strategic character (e.g. regarding the use of parking spaces in the Ancient City; organisation of the public transport; regulations of services organisation; etc.). These remarks and recommendations are not included in the MP but shall be forwarded to the respective authorities.
The MP plans the following mayor activities, referred to the respective programmes:
Within the frames of Programme 2012 for urgent activities are planned some urgent activities in the field of the management like: establishment of department “Ancient City of Nessebar” in the structure of the Municipal administration and Expert Council to it; establishment of Municipal fund “Culture” (Fund “C”) and of Public Council to the management body. It is important to stress that as a result of the interaction of the MP team with the Municipality, the first applied result of the Plan in the field of management is already available: Department “Nessebar – World Heritage” (Department NWH) operates from the beginning of 2012 by the municipal administration with the proposed in the MP functions, whose main aim is to implement the Management Plan;
Within the frames of the Working Programme 2013 with work-schedule, after the adoption of the MP are planned the most important activities for the establishment of institutional network: preparation and adoption of the Law for conservation and development of the Ancient City of Nessebar – World Heritage”; establishment of National fund “Nessebar – World Heritage”; foundation of municipal Conservation company, development of Automated information system; development of Integrated plan for sustainable urban development; implementing of educational programme.