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Kaunas modernist architecture added to UNESCO World Heritage List

Created: 2023.09.18 / Updated: 2023.09.18 14:23
      Kaunas modernist architecture added to UNESCO World Heritage List
      Kaunas modernist architecture added to UNESCO World Heritage List

      Having recognized the “outstanding universal value” of Kaunas modernist architecture to humanity at the extended 45th session of the World Heritage Committee of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, the Committee agreed to inscribe it on the World Heritage List.

      According to the Permanent Delegate of Lithuania to UNESCO, Ambassador Jolanta Balčiūnienė, the members of the Committee, who acknowledged the uniqueness of the modernist architecture of Kaunas, appreciated the contribution by Lithuanian experts and overall efforts of the representatives of Lithuania to obtain the nomination. “With this decision, the World Heritage Committee recognized the place of modern Kaunas in the global history of modernist architecture. This step is a tremendous honour and a responsibility for us to further nurture this exceptional cultural heritage site,” Balčiūnienė said.

      In adopting this decision, the Committee mandated the Lithuanian authorities to clarify some technical aspects of the nomination by the end of 2025.

      Lithuania submitted the nomination dossier “Modernist Kaunas: Architecture of Optimism, 1919-1939” in January 2021, expecting it to be considered as early as summer 2022. However, UNESCO postponed the meeting of the World Heritage Committee that was set to take place in Kazan last year due to Russia’s war against Ukraine.

      Along with Kaunas modernist architecture, today there are four other Lithuanian tangible heritage objects inscribed on the World Heritage List  – Vilnius Historic Centre, Kernavė Archaeological Site, Curonian Spit, and Struve Geodetic Arc.

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