*[Enwl-eng] [cenn] CENN Assesses Changes to Botanical Garden

ENWL.Bellona enwl.bellona at gmail.com
Sat Apr 30 23:50:53 MSD 2016



CENN Assesses Changes to Botanical Garden



CENN is conducting a preliminary assessment into possible adjustments to the 
boundaries of the Georgian National Botanical Garden, based on consultations 
with experts.



Areas of the garden have already been privatised and additional sales are 
planned. There is concern that there are significant risks in adjusting the 
boundaries of the botanical garden, an area of an exceptional cultural, 
scientific, educational and recreational value.



According to CENN, ‘In 2007, the Botanical Garden was granted the status of 
a cultural heritage monument within conditional boundaries. By this 
decision, the Government expressed its political will and created a legal 
basis for [applying] the status over the whole territory of the garden, 
including the areas annexed later. Nowadays we are facing the fact that the 
City Hall has not chosen a legal way to solve the issue and failed to apply 
to the Ministry of Culture and Monuments Protection of Georgia. With no 
substantiation and public involvement in place, there appeared a reasonable 
doubt that the decision was made neglecting the value of the monument and 
public interests’.



By selling off areas of the Botanical Garden, and by changing its status as 
a protected site, there is a risk that developments on the site could do 
irreparable damage. There is already precedent for this with previous 
construction work having significantly damaged the integrity of the garden.



CENN is especially critical of the lack of transparency and accountability 
in the decision making process, ‘making similar decisions involving public 
interests with no public involvement is unacceptable. In addition to the 
risks concerning this specific decision, this also reveals related systemic 
problems in the country and the quality of democracy in general. This is our 
initial assessment. CENN will prepare a more thorough analysis based on 
consultations with botanists, ecologists, cultural heritage experts and 
lawyers and will disseminate it in the coming days. Our goal in the current 
situation is to achieve active cooperation between the public and the 
Government to avoid the grave outcomes of ill-founded and covert decisions 
which in the given situation can impose irreparable damage to Tbilisi”.



CENN will announce their full position on development of the Botanical 
Garden once the preliminary assessment is completed.



T +995 32 275 19 03/04
F +995 32 275 19 05
 <mailto:info at cenn.org> info at cenn.org
 <http://www.cenn.org/> www.cenn.org


From: "Info CENN" <infocenn at cenn.ge>
Sent: Thursday, April 28, 2016 6:50 PM
Subject: [cenn] CENN Assesses Changes to Botanical Garden

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