Petra Siq Stability: Managing Disaster Risks in the Siq of Petra (Phase III)

©UNESCO

Petra is one of the world’s richest and largest archaeological sites, set in a dominating red sandstone landscape and inscribed in the World Heritage List in 1985 in light of its “Outstanding Universal Value”. The 'Siq' is a 1.2km, naturally formed gorge that snakes through the sandstone cliffs, serving as the main entrance to the site. Due to its unique geological and cultural landscape, Petra’s 'Siq' is a fragile site impacted by several natural and geological hazards, as rock falls, earthquakes, floods, weathering.

Building on the positive results achieved in Phase I and II (2012-2016), the third phase (2016-2018) of the Italian-funded project aims to implement priority mitigation measures in those areas identified as more prone to environmental hazards, with a primary focus on reducing land slide and flash flood risks in the ‘Siq’.

The project will also respond to a strongly felt need to enhance management and preparedness against disaster risks through the development of a Disaster Risk Management Plan for addressing emergencies within the Petra Archaeological Park and particularly in the 'Siq'. This Italian-funded project is implemented by the UNESCO Amman Office in partnership with the Petra Archaeological Park, the Department of Antiquities of Jordan, Jordanian and international experts in the field of landslide risk preparedness and mitigation.

The overarching objectives of Phase III are:

1. Implementation of landslide/flash flood risk mitigation interventions on the ‘Siq’ slopes in line with the priorities identified in Phase II;

2. Development of a complete Disaster Risk Management Plan for the Petra Archaeological Park, including an Emergency Plan for the 'Siq';

3. Capacity development of the national authorities to address the management of landslide-specific risk at the site and implement mitigation measures in coordination with international experts.

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