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UNESCO presents 2014 Asia-Pacific Award of Distinction for Cultural Heritage Conservation to Saryazd Citadel

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9 Feb 2015- In a festive ceremony on 7 February, Ms. Kuisch Laroche (Director and Representative of the UNESCO Tehran Cluster Office) presented the prestigious UNESCO Award of Distinction to Mr. Saryazdi, Director General of Arg-e Saryazd Development, for the impressive restoration of the historical Saryazd Citadel.

The UNESCO Asia-Pacific Heritage Awards have over the past 15 years brought to light successful private sector efforts in conserving heritage buildings in the region. UNESCO believes that commending such initiatives will encourage others to undertake conservation projects, either through local community efforts or by seeking public-private partnerships.

Mr. Saryazdi undertook the impressive restoration of the Saryazd citadel, which not only saved a disappearing style of architecture in rural Iran, but also benefitted local community members economically through job creation as a result the huge conservation effort.

“I am not government, but I feel responsible for these historic monuments”, said Mr. Saryazdi.
 

 

Through his efforts he rescued the isolated desert complex, which had suffered from looting and neglect, returning the landmark to its former prominence. The ambitious scope of the project encompassed caravanserais, bath houses and a castle, which comprise the adobe ensemble built over several dynasties.

The conception, planning and execution of work were the result of exemplary cooperation between Mr. Saryazdi’s company, community partners and local artisans. The use of traditional construction materials and techniques and the protection of the surrounding landscape have ensured that the citadel and its setting have been conserved with a high degree of authenticity.

The UNESCO Representative commended Mr. Saryazdi and his colleagues for his impressive efforts. At the end of the ceremony, Ms. Kuisch Laroche presented Mr. Saryazdi with the award certificate and unveiled the UNESCO plaque.   

 

Restoration of the Saryazd citadel, not only saved a disappearing style of architecture in rural Iran, but also benefitted local community members economically through job creation as a result the huge conservation effort.

This is the third time that Iran wins a UNESCO Asia-Pacific Heritage Award. In 2002 “Polsheer House” in Isfahan won an Award of Merit, with an honourable mentioned awarded in 2004 to “Zargar-e Yazdi House” in Yazd and in 2005 to “Zain-ad-din Karavansara”, also located in Yazd.

In 2014 the award cycle received 46 entries from 16 countries across Asia and the Pacific. The jury gave the Award of Distinction to the Saryazd citadel and praised the vision and tremendous dedication by members of the local community and the private partnership that planned and executed the restoration project.

For more information about the 2015 award cycle, please visit our website:

http://www.unescobkk.org/culture/heritage/wh/heritageawards
 
 
 
 
 
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