The UNESCO inscription of the Loire Valley: the management process of living cultural landscape

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The proposed site for the project exercise of the 5th EUSS edition falls within the limits of “The Loire Valley between Sully-sur-Loire and Chalonnes” UNESCO designated area, a complex landscape that includes the river Loire but also much of its valley, and countless interrelationships between man and river that contributed to its prosperity and its heritage density. In addition to its royal chateaux and gardens, its historic urban centers and troglodyte dwellings, this landscape also bears witness to the continuation of a river culture in which human activity and ‘savoir-vivre’ have evolved alongside of the river. According to the UNESCO criteria, it represents an “organically evolved” and “continuing” cultural landscape, heavily populated. The Management Plan results from a cultural process based on knowledge and the appropriation of the World Heritage values, by both its public and private stakeholders. It has been approved in November 2012 by the State after the validation by the 197 local councils concerned by the UNESCO site. The challenge is now to guide its implementation in the necessary development of the Loire Valley and to promote the World Heritage resources as added-values of the innovative development which guarantee the sustainability of the UNESCO World heritage property and the right transmission to future generations.
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