The 41st session of the World Heritage Committee, chaired by Jacek Purchla, founder and director of the International Cultural Center in Krakow, Poland inscribed Asmara, the capital city of Eritrea, as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Asmara is home to perhaps one of the world’s most concentrated and beautifully preserved futurist (modernist) architecture.
“Asmara: Africa’s Modernist City, Eritrea” was one of the 26 cultural sites nominated for inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Besides benefiting from technical assistance helping renovate and preserve the historic buildings, the World Heritage Status would draw visitors to Asmara and boost the tourism industry.
Last year, a research made by the Asmara Heritage Project team, ‘Asmara – Africa’s Modernist City‘, that forms Eritrea’s first ever application to list Asmara as a UNESCO’s World Heritage Site, has won the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) President’s Medal for Research.
Africa is underrepresented on the UNESCO World Heritage list and also in modernist history and Asmara’s recognition is, therefore, one of many that will increasingly try to redress this imbalance.
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