A Strategic Heritage Plan for the Palais des Nations
The Palais des Nations embodies the origins and history of our multilateral system and represents the common heritage of the international community. UNOG is proud to hold this unique heritage in trust.
The Strategic Heritage Plan represents the foundation for a sustainable future for the Palais des Nations in the service of security, development and human rights for all.
Today, the extensive and diverse use, coupled with the age of the buildings, presents UNOG with a range of urgent maintenance challenges to the upkeep of the Palais des Nations. While superficially the main building and its annexes appear structurally sound, The current state of the building undermines the ability of UNOG to service Member States and other users in an adequate, safe and cost-effective manner.
The scope and complexity of the structural problems necessitate a complete renovation and refurbishment. The concrete has cracked in a large number of places and there is significant damage to the roof. There is also damage to the floor areas and to internal walls in several places due to structural movements. The storage conditions for the UNOG Library and archive materials, which includes the archives of the League of Nations, do not conform to international standards.
, the Director-General had made the development of a Strategic Heritage Plan for the Palais des Nations a key priority. He was working closely with Member States and relevant parts of the Secretariat in this regard. In 2008, a group of Member States has stepped forward, as a Group of Friends of the Palais des Nations
, to provide guidance and support for a Strategic Heritage Plan. The Group is open to all interested Member States. The support of the entire membership of the Organization is critical.
Overview of the three-phase Strategic Heritage Plan:
Initial basic assessment
of the type and scope of the challenges and terms of reference (TRs) for a larger study.
Based on the TRs of the foundational phase 1 study, a conceptual engineering and architectural study
outlining the challenges, describing appropriate remedial action and likely time frames, providing possible options, with estimated costs for Member States’ consideration. The scope of the actual renovation was determined on the basis of the outcome of the phase 2 engineering and architectural study.
- Establishment of key performance objectives in terms of functionality of the premises, energy performance, quality of interior environment and security, as well as longevity and durability;
- Identification of major operational issues and critical security risks and proposal of strategies to mitigate impact on operations;
- Comprehensive, high-level assessment of the renovation, rehabilitation and restoration needs of the Palais des Nations;
- Different options and technical alternatives;
- Alternative concepts and implementation strategies to execute a renovation, rehabilitation and restoration programme at the Palais des Nations;
- Recommendation of the concept deemed most appropriate for necessary renovation, rehabilitation and restoration works, including project priorities, high-level outline of a project plan with organization and management of the project, a provisional timeline and a rough order of magnitude of the possible project cost.
, the recommended phased 8-year renovation programme
is estimated to cost approximately CHF 618 Million.
In 2011, Switzerland approved CHF 50 million for energy efficiency related renovation works envisaged as part of the proposed SHP. The General Assembly approved a budget of USD 3,6 million to finalize the implementation phase of the Strategic Heritage Plan.
For further information and pictures please see:
Report of the Seretary-General: Strategic Heritage Plan of the United Nations Office at Geneva (A/66/279)
2010 UNOG Annual Report: In Focus: Our common heritage: our collective responsibility
2009 UNOG Annual Report: In Focus: Preserving the legacy of the international community: a Strategic Heritage Plan for the Palais des Nations
2008 UNOG Annual report: Special Feature 1: Preserving the Shared Heritage of the Palais des Nations: Our Collective Responsibility