UNESCO asked China for clarification on issues raised by the Concern Group for the Protection of the Guia Lighthouse regarding the construction of high-rise buildings in the vicinity” of the lighthouse – a monument classified as a world heritage site – according to Rádio Macau.
The UNESCO document replied three months after the group alerted the international organisation on 16 June for “two critical issues that remain unresolved in safeguarding the visual integrity and visual corridors” of the lighthouse.
On the one hand, the group cited an “urgent need to reduce the height of an unfinished construction building on Calçada do Gaio” and the fact that the 90-metre limit along Avenida do Dr Rodrigo Rodrigues is “unsuitable for protecting the visual integrity of the lighthouse and visual corridors”.
According to the government radio station, UNESCO also said it already received “information and documentation” on the issues raised. Both the World Heritage Center and the councils of the World Heritage Committee are analysing the situation.
The letter, signed by UNESCO Deputy Director-General for Culture Ernesto Ottone, guarantees that the United Nations agency “will continue to work closely with the Chinese authorities to ensure that the exceptional universal value [of the Guia Lighthouse] is totally preserved ”.
Last June, the Guia Lighthouse safeguard group said to UNESCO that 12 years have passed since the Macao government promised to reduce the height of an unfinished building on the Calçada do Gaio.
The group also warned of the “slow or ineffective follow-up given” to the issue of new construction along Avenida do Dr Rodrigo Rodrigues.
The Historic Centre of Macao was inscribed on the World Heritage List on 15 July 2005.