Contributions for a Conservation Management Plan for the Beira. Railway Station, Mozambique

Afagbegee, Benjamin
Trabajo fin de máster presentado en la Universidade do Minho el 12 de septiembre de 2022

Directores del trabajo: Paulo Lourenço , Javier Ortega Heras

The Conservation and Management of the 20th century architectural heritage,the most significant architectural legacy from the 20th century can be attributed to the modern movement has become a pressing issue in recent decades. Inspired by the industrial revolution, modern architects deployed new scientific, theoretical , pioneering building approaches and materials to architecture. On the contrary, these materials and structural designs were frequently experimental and have not always performed admirably. Heritage professionals in most occasions lack the scientific information on the performance of these materials and systems making it difficult to prepare the required protocols for conservation and maintenance though some notable examplars are inscribed on UNESCO World Heritage. A notable iconic example of the 20th century architectural heritage in Mozambique is the Beira Railway Station, situated at the mouth of the Pungue river along the Indian Ocean. The present works consists of the elaboration of a Conservation Management Plan (CMP) for the Beira Railway Station, based on the guidelines of the Burra Charter (The Australia ICOMOS Charter for places of Cultural Significance, 2013) and the Madrid – New Delhi Document (Approaches to the Conservation of Twentieth - Century Cultural Heritage, 2017). The objective is to provide a framework to guide the long term maintenance of the Beira Railway Station. The process is founded on an analysis of the historical background of the Beira Railway Station, as well as inspection, analysis and diagnosis works, including long-term monitoring data and stakeholder consultation.After the study of the historical background of the building and its architecture, an assessment of the values of the Beira Railway Station was made, aiming to develop a statement of cultural significance of the building and its components. Then, the CMP identified factors and issues that affect the present and the future use of the station and its significance, e.g. present state of conservation, comfort conditions, natural hazards, legal framework, as well as future needs, opportunities and constraints.Based on the analysis of the aforementioned and the identification of the heritage values, specific and detailed conservation policies are proposed for the site,including a maintenance schedule, with an Implementation and Monitoring Plan. The policies drafted for the site are the core of the present work, as they will guide the efforts to preserve the significance of the Beira Railway Station. The implementation plan for this CMP uses a people centered approach underpinned by culture directed at resonating indigenous Mozambican identity based on understanding the needs and limitations of the end users as well as the local community and fashioning methods which are more likely to be adopted and embraced by a broad spectrum of stakeholders to accomplish strategic goals through the formulation of proposals within the framework of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s). This is expected to offer a wide range of options for future donor funding that helps to implement projects. This CMP is a contribution to the ongoing Conservation Management Plan by Consultants funded by the Getty Foundation Keeping It Modern Initiative for the Beira Railway Station,which will serve as a reference for the conservation of the 20th century architectural heritage in Mozambique and sets the basis for the future classification of modern buildings requiring conservation intervention in the country.