via The Irrawaddy, 22 Janary 2020: Some hotel construction within the protected zone is proceeding as normal, and even then still unbelievably close to some of the monuments.
Despite a prohibition on new construction in Myanmar’s World Heritage site, new hotels and guesthouses continue to be built within the protected property zone of Bagan, according to local residents.
The 50-sq.-km property zone is an area “that has been demarcated as containing most of the cultural heritage attributes” by the Myanmar government and UNESCO.
Myanmar’s government submitted a management plan for Bagan to UNESCO in January 2018 as part of the World Heritage nomination process. The plan includes strategies and guidelines to resolve issues like hotels, booming tourism, development, environmental problems and natural disasters.
Calling the visitor accommodation issue “one of the greatest threats” to the property zone, the government commits in the management plan to assessing all existing hotels and guesthouses within the zone to ensure that they do not impact the heritage site. The plan includes relocation of hotels currently inside the property zone by 2028.
However, new projects continue to be developed within the property zone, with new properties being built just a stone’s throw from ancient monuments and heavy machinery being used in the construction of those properties, said Bagan resident U Myo Hset San.