17:04 / 14.01.2023

UNESCO calls to choose another place for Bukhara tourism center  

The site chosen for the construction of the Bukhara Tourism Center is located in the buffer zone of the historical center of Bukhara, so the UNESCO Office in Uzbekistan did not support the project. The Cultural Heritage Agency reminds the government that any project in this area must be agreed with the agency and UNESCO.

Estimated project of the tourism center Photo: Bukhara News

After the publication of an article about the demolition of buildings near the historical center of Bukhara and the construction of a tourism center, Kun.uz received information about the project from A. Rasulov, head of the department of the Cultural Heritage Agency, and Sh. Sharofiddinov, the head of the Bukhara regional cultural heritage department.

It says that the historic center of Bukhara, located in the city of Bukhara, was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1993. The territory of the historical center of Bukhara is 216 hectares, and its protected area is 339 hectares (555 hectares in total).

The total area of the planned tourism center is 32.6 hectares, and it is completely located in the protection zone of the historical center of Bukhara. In this area, there are 2 objects of cultural heritage included in the National Register. These are the “Sallakhkhana” gate, restored in 2012, and the bust of Abu Ali ibn Sina, installed in 1980.

The agency proposed the following to preserve and prevent damage to these 2 facilities:

•  In accordance with the decision No. 265 of the Cabinet of Ministers dated 30.03.2019, in order to prevent damage to the appearance and historical value of the “Sallakhkhana” gate, not to plan the construction of a building in its protected area, that is, within a radius of 50 meters from the object; 
•  To keep the bust of Abu Ali ibn Sina located in the territory of the current Medical Institute – the object of cultural heritage in its place according to the investor’s proposal or, in case it does not correspond to the general concept proposed by the investor, move it to the territory of the Bukhara Regional Multidisciplinary Medical Central Hospital or the Bukhara Medical College, located on M.Iqbol Street, Bukhara, in accordance with the government’s decision;
•  In the area selected for the Bukhara tourism center adjacent to and close to the historical center of Bukhara, buildings and structures should not exceed 2 floors or 7.5 meters.

Also, as the agency reported, according to the requirements of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, any major projects planned to be built in the historical center of Bukhara and its buffer zone must be agreed in advance with UNESCO and, according to local legislation, with the agency.

As the responsible body reported, on October 1, 2022, the director of UNESCO representative office in Uzbekistan, Sara Noshadi, the former minister of tourism and cultural heritage, Aziz Abdukhakimov, and the governor of Bukhara region, Botir Zaripov, examined the selected land areas for the Bukhara tourism center project. At that time, Sara Noshadi proposed the feasibility of building this project on the land plot on the side of Kalkan street of “Gulchorbog” mahalla, 1.8 km away from the protection zone of the historical center of Bukhara.

It should be recalled that earlier, a group of Bukhara residents appealed to the President against the proposal to build a tourist complex instead of the Bukhara Central Stadium.

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