We live in a continent full of tremendously interesting monuments and places but, unfortunately, many of them are about to disappear, either due to lack of resources, carelessness, eagerness to renew them … Fortunately, the program " The 7 Most Endangered " is tasked with identifying endangered sites in Europe, devises a plan to save them, and mobilizes public and private partners at local, national and European levels to find a viable future for them.
This program, which was launched in January 2013 by Europa Nostra together with the European Investment Bank Institute (EIB) and the Development Bank of the Council of Europe, has just published the list of the 7 most threatened places in Europe in 2016. ¿ Would you like to discover which are the sad winners of this year? You just have to join us!
Yereruyk Temple and Ani Pemza Village, Armenia
First of all, we have to talk about the Yereuyk temple, which sits on an isolated rocky plateau near the Turkish-Armenian border. Although for a time this 6th-century basilica was one of the largest and most important centers in the region, today it is in poor condition, not least due to the damage caused by several earthquakes . Of course, you also have to take into account the entire archaeological zone that surrounds the basilica.
Patarei Prison in Tallinn, Estonia
On the other hand, the organization has proposed to save the Patarei Prison in Tallinn, the largest and most impressive classical-style defense complex in the country, which was used as a jail between 1920 and 2005. For the last decade, the buildings have remained empty , suffering numerous acts of vandalism , although its main threat is its rapid deterioration due to the harsh climate and lack of maintenance.
Helsinki-Malmi Airport, Finland
From Estonia we moved to Finland to talk about Helsinki-Malmi Airport, built for the 1940 Olympics, which were canceled due to the Second World War. The problem with this historic site is not that it is in poor condition, but that it is under serious threat from a new development project that intends to use the site to build homes.
Colbert Suspension Bridge in Dieppe, France
In France we also find a historical place that is in danger of extinction. It is the Colbert Suspension Bridge in the Norman city of Dieppe. Contemporary with the Eiffel Tower, it is considered the last great suspension bridge in Europe that works with its original hydraulic compression system. Unfortunately, it has not been properly maintained, which has led to great deterioration. Fortunately, the damage is reversible.
Kampos region in Chios, Greece
The organization has also selected the Kampos Region on the island of Chios in Greece. It is a semi-rural area that exemplifies the coexistence of styles and influences from Byzantine, Genoese and local architecture. It is important to note that the existing urban fabric includes historical buildings from the 14th-18th centuries and neoclassical buildings from the early 20th century. The problem is that the owners are unable to maintain their properties.
Convent of San Antonio de Padua in Extremadura, Spain
Spain is also represented on this list. Specifically, we have to talk about the Convent of San Antonio de Padua, which is located in the town of Garrovillas de Alconétar, Cáceres . The religious building, which was built at the end of the 15th century, is in an advanced state of disrepair, despite the fact that it was classified as an Asset of Cultural Interest in 1991.
Ancient city of Hasankeyf and its surroundings, Turkey
Finally, we have to talk about the ancient city of Hasankeyf, which is located on the banks of the Tigris River, in southeastern Turkey, near the border with Syria. It is a 12,000-year-old settlement with a rich history and multicultural heritage. However, 80% of the area will be flooded if the Ilisu hydroelectric dam project is carried out, as planned.