Tenía que suceder: justo la semana que me voy a culequear a Art Basel Miami Beach viene la Cinta Costera y empieza a hacer bulla de nuevo. Primero el Mop nos regala esta ilustrativa infografía de 500 pixeles sobre el viaducto marino, y después la Unesco publica su más reciente State of Conservation Report sobre el Casco Viejo y Panamá Viejo. Ahí están los reportes de los últimos cinco años de esta lucha, y si tienen un par de horas que dedicarles los invito a que les echen un ojo, pero como yo sé que son gente ocupada les pongo abajo las partes más sabrosas. Y dice:
- Since the 35th session of the World Heritage Committee, the World Heritage Centre has received multiple requests and complaints from the civil society of Panama, NGO’s and international heritage experts, concerning the construction of the Cinta Costera III project.
- The World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS […] submitted a proposal for a panel of experts; however the mission was cancelled by the State Party on two occasions between September and November 2011. Notwithstanding, the state of conservation report indicated that the State Party organized a meeting of national and international technical experts on 7and 8 December 2011 to evaluate the draft proposal of a maritime viaduct prepared by the Oderbrecht Company. The meeting concluded with the State Party’s decision on a definitive proposal of the Cinta Costera III project, which was presented on 31 January 2012 to the World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS. The State Party officially stated that the aforementioned proposal is the only alternative the Government of Panama is submitting for consideration and review by the World Heritage Committee.
- Given the poor state of conservation of a significant number of built heritage properties, including several at risk of collapse, the World Heritage Committee requested the State Party in 2011 to establish a special legal framework for the Historic District. The State Party indicated in the 2012 report that, in accordance with Panamanian law, it is not possible to establish a new and distinct administrative unit. […] According to information received from the State Party, the Minister of Education has been mandated to submit a proposal of Law 64-11 to the Legislative National Assembly, and civil society is being consulted. Subsequent to careful evaluation, the draft text of the Decree renders it insufficient to deal with the complexity of the case in addressing issues of land ownership and built heritage at risk of collapse. This is underpinned by the lack of a conservation plan and an updated and legally-adopted Master Plan for the Historic District.
- At its 35th session, the World Heritage Committee regretted that the authorities approved the construction works for Cinta Costera II, and expressed its deep concern that the planned peripheral highway works would irreversibly damage the Outstanding Universal Value of the property. The 2010 mission considered that Phase 3 of the project would pose an even larger threat to the integrity of the property as it would transform the District’s traditional form and appearance on its coastline, an important attribute which warranted its inscription on the World Heritage List.
- [T]he World Heritage Committee requested the State Party to halt the current construction works and urged it to reconsider the alternative of the tunnel option. The latter has since been discarded by the State Party on the grounds of costs. The construction of the overland solution has also been rejected in terms of cost and the expropriation that would be needed. The World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS consider however that alternative solutions have not been sufficiently explored nor technical comprehensive assessment been submitted in order to justify feasible geomorphologic risk in the area or other reasons for discarding the options.
- The State Party presented its rationale for a viaduct as the mainland urban area is densely urbanized and tightly constrained, restricting an overland solution. No concrete figures and/or comprehensive study of traffic or mobility have been presented to warrant these statements and no alternative overland solutions have been explored by the State Party which would respond to comprehensive studies.
- The State Party submitted the Environmental Impact Assessment of the encircling viaduct intervention prepared by the Oderbrecht Company (the company awarded the contract), in which there is no consideration of the Outstanding Universal Value of the World Heritage property in the Terms of Reference for the assessment.
- Conscious of the high impact in linking the Avenida Balboa to Puente de las Americas, the State Party recognizes that it is a problematic project, but has stated it cannot be deferred as the geography is considered as a constraint to increase the growth of the capital.
- The statement of the State Party requesting the assessment of only this proposal does not allow for dialogue about potential solutions.
- The proposed maritime viaduct project and corresponding Heritage Impact Assessment has been reviewed by the World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS. The viaduct would encircle the beach which has historically bordered the Historic District since its foundation. The advantages noted in the assessments are not beneficial to the property and the conditions of integrity and authenticity would be irreversibly compromised.
- The existent relationship of the Historic Centre with the sea would be lost and there would be radical transformations of the natural seascape, both critical attributes of the Historic District that warranted its inscription on the World Heritage List and that differentiates this Historic Centre from others in the region.
- A detailed study on mobility and traffic should be prepared prior to any intervention, so as to identify a long-term solution for mobility and urban growth and in compatibility with the commitment made to sustaining the Outstanding Universal Value of the property.
Y aterrizamos entonces en la conclusión, que reproducimos íntegramente con un par de secciones resaltadas:
The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies acknowledge with concern the state of conservation of the property and the threats that remain unaddressed, including the lack of effectiveness of the management system, governance and decision-making mechanisms between the two components of the property, the significant number of historic buildings at risk of collapse, and the ownership figures of the Historic District which reveal an increase in real estate speculation and the lack of a housing policy. They further consider that the on-going development of the Cinta Costera III and the alternative of the encircling viaduct, in spite of the Decisions of the World Heritage Committee and the recommendations of the reactive monitoring missions, constitute a real threat to the attributes that sustain the Outstanding Universal Value of the property. It is recommended that much higher standards of protection and development need to be set in this area. The tunnel proposal, which would have assured minimal impacts on the property, should be reconsidered as requested by the World Heritage Committee in 2011, in combination with other overland infrastructures in the framework of a comprehensive and solid planning strategy for urban development, in which the traffic component should be carefully studied. Given the scale and the proximity of the proposed water development around the property, impacts on the visual integrity of the historic landscape and seascape cannot be avoided. It should be noted that all the graphic information received of the viaduct does not include any example of the functioning of the highway. The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies therefore recommend studying alternatives that do not include the marine highway encircling the historic areas, in consideration of the Outstanding Universal Value of the site and the character of the national maritime protected area.
The assessment of all relevant documents concludes that the planned works on the viaduct are continuing and that the project has not been halted. The World Heritage Committee may decide to inscribe the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger and consider to delete this property from the World Heritage List at its 37th session in 2013, as proceeding with the construction would irreversibly compromise the attributes that sustain the Outstanding Universal Value of the property and the conditions of authenticity and integrity.
The viaduct project will irreversibly damage the Outstanding Universal Value, authenticity and integrity of the property. The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies were informed that activities planned have started and the construction of the platforms has begun. As per Committee Decisions at the 33rd, 34th and 35th sessions ofthe World Heritage Committee, the State Party was requested to halt the project Cinta Costera II and Cinta Costera III, and requested to consider alternative proposals for a solution to traffic congestion and mobility at the property. These have not been sufficiently explored by the State Party and no comprehensive studies exist to substantiate reasons for being discarded. According to the project now being implemented, the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies consider that the construction will irrevocably impact the Outstanding Universal Value of the property, and could result in the World Heritage Committee considering the deletion of the property from the World Heritage List.
Así, de nuevo, clarito. Quedamos advertidos. ¿Alguna pregunta?