Considering the City’s constant urban development, and taking into account the influence this might have on the ‘exceptional’ value of the asset, a study has been carried out to define a buffer zone; this is where future interventions of Historic Centre of Florence will take place. At the time of its registration in 1982 as a UNESCO World Heritage site, no provision for a buffer zone was considered. However, from the Vienna Memorandum (2005) onwards, the management of the integrity of the urban profile is regarded as a priority.
In the UNESCO WHC document 11/01 “Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention”, written in November 2011 “a buffer zone is an area surrounding the nominated property which has complementary legal and/or customary restrictions placed on its use and development to give an added layer of protection to the property.” The buffer zone should ensure the protection of the immediate background, the primary visual and other structural and functional features of the site. The same guidelines show that the perimeter of the buffer zone around the Core Zone must be identifiable, and in the area proposals and implemented specific regulations for the protection of assets.
The objective of the project was the identification of the buffer zone of the UNESCO Site “Historic Centre of Florence” by re-elaborating the data collected from the survey and the listing of different outlooks that are accessible to the public. These are the places that form the identity of the Historic Centre, as well as places that are closely related to its image.
The buffer zone for the Historic Centre of Florence is approved by the World Heritage Committee on 6 July 2015, on the occasion of the 39th session that took place in Bonn, with the Decision 39 COM 8B.44. It covers an area of 10,480 hectares, including the hilly slopes around the city of Florence, to the north, south, east, and the plain to the northwest. The area comprises parts of the territories of four municipalities: the Municipality of Florence, the Municipality of Sesto Fiorentino, the Municipality of Fiesole and the Municipality of Bagno a Ripoli.