Renovierung der Kulturstätten in Nepal nach den Erdbeben 2015
Cultural heritage sites in the Kathmandu Valley, originally restored and conserved with support of Austria, which were damaged or destroyed by the earthquakes in 2015, are conserved and renovated. Resulting increase in number of visitors (local and foreign) will allow both institutions to generate enough income again to bear costs for maintenance and conservation themselves. The cultural and religious sites can be re-integrated in people’s daily lives and re-used in the context of cultural traditions and rituals.
This will be achieved through:
The Patan Museum with its historic wings being damaged will be secured and restored. Also the damaged pavilions in the Garden of Dreams will be restored. This guarantees safety for visitors and allows a complete re-opening of the sites.
On the Patan Durbar Square two important statues which collapsed will be conserved and reassembled. Furthermore, selected works of art such as stone and metal sculptures, works of art within the Royal Palace complex and the Durbar Square will be conserved.
In order to allow a meaningful achievement of the project goal, the following additional results and activities had to be added and financed by the budget increase:
• the continuation of the maintenance of the museum’s collection after restoring the museum buildings (including inventorisation, documentation, cleaning and safety measures)
• the conservation and restoring of the octogonal Krishna temple
• the conservation and restoring of the roof and the pinnacle of the Degu-Taleju-temple in the Royal Palace
• the conservation and restoring of the rock foundation of the Baidegah temple
The preservation of the two cultural heritage sites will have manifold benefits for specific target groups:
The creation of up to 100 jobs – full-time and on temporary or part-time basis – will provide employment opportunities to professionals (engineers, restoration experts), craftsmen (wooden handicrafts and metal workers) and unskilled workers.
The about 72,000 local and foreign visitors of the Patan Museum, the Garden of Dreams and the Patan Durbar Square will be another target group as they will have full access to the heritage sites again.
The applicant is the Institute of Conservation, part of the University of Applied Arts Vienna. The local partners are Kathmandu Valley Preservation Trust, the Patan Museum Board and the Garden of Dreams Development Board.
Main activities targeted are:
The restoration of the Patan Museum and the three damaged pavilions in the Garden of Dreams will allow a full re-opening for visitors (foreign and local) and ensures their safety on-site. The conservation and reassembling of the collapsed statues on the Patan Durbar Square contribute to the restoration of the overall appearance of the Square and to the preservation of this valuable cultural heritage. Selected monuments and works of art, being integral parts of sites affected by the earthquake, are conserved and restored and can be re-used for the reconstruction. Techniques for reassembling are chosen with regard to possible future earthquakes and should ensure more safety for people.
Nepal is one of the poorest and least developed countries in the world. Nepal’s economy primarily focuses on agriculture and tourism. In April and May 2015 Nepal was hit by two devastating earthquakes. Beside the humanitarian crisis - claiming more than 9,000 human lives, injuring over 22,000 people and directly affecting 8 million people (one third of Nepal’s population) – Nepal has to face declining economy, decrease in tourism and related decrease in income. Only for the tourism industry the overall impact will be a reduction of up to 40% in the next 12 months and 20% in the next 12 to 24 months. The total value of damages and losses amounts 7 billion UD-Dollars.
The total amount of damage to Nepal’s cultural heritage can only be estimated so far. At least altogether 2,900 historic structures suffer from severe damage or were completely destroyed. Over 700 monuments in the Kathmandu Valley including the seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites have been affected. The total estimated damage to tangible cultural heritage amounts to USD 170 million.
In the fields of cultural heritage, preservation and conservation Austria has collaborated with Nepal for a long time. The Patan Museum located in the Royal Palace of Patan was restored and adapted over a period of 15 years and inaugurated in 1997. The Garden of Dreams, a neo classical historical garden with its impressive pavilions, is situated in the center of Kathmandu. Following years of neglect it required 7 years of restoration till the garden reopened in 2007.
The Patan Museum and the Garden of Dreams enjoy high exposure and have been nationally and internationally recognized as some of the most prestigious achievements in the preservation and presentation of Nepal's cultural heritage.
The Patan Museum and all three pavilions of the Garden of Dreams suffered from severe damage due to the earthquake.