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Directorate for Cultural Heritage

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Urban Development

The piers in Trondheim. This row of buildings has immense national value, but their future use poses a challenge. Photo:Leidulf Mydland, Riksantikvaren

The Directorate for cultural heritage in Norway have recently launched a strategy for management of urban cultural heritage. The years up to 2030 are projected to show a 30% increase in the population grow rate around the four main cities in Norway.

From a sustainability perspective compact urban area with short journey times is preferable. Compact urban development can be sustainable in terms of energy and transport economics, but also poses challenges. Modification to existing building, vertical and horizontal extensions and densification requirements potentially pose threats to cultural heritage assets in the cities and the integrity of historical environments.

The strategy emphasised that monuments, sites and cultural environments should be managed from a long-term perspective, while utilised as resources and public assets in developing thriving communities in attractive urban areas. This must be accomplished both by improving protection instruments and preserving existing features of the most important urban environment.

Another goal is to strengthen the role and significance of monuments and sites I the Greens Shift and to facilitate development and transformation where this is feasible.


  • Cultural heritage assets must be utilised as resources in the development of climate-friendly urban areas
  • Monuments and sites must be equipped to withstand climate change
  • The diversity and distinctiveness of urban areas must be preserved and sustained
  • In unified, homogeneous districts, contrastive visual aspects that not sustain the attributes of the cultural environment are to be avoid
  • Cultural heritage must be managed considering its societal value
  • Quality must be emphasised at all levels
  • The method of conservation must reflect the asset to be protected
  • The management of cultural heritage assets must be proactive, clear and solution-oriented
  • Activities must be based on participatory processes

Download strategy for management of urban cultural heritage (pdf)


Strategy for Management of Urban Cultural Heritage 2017 - 2020