By Wendy Williams
UNESCO has given the thumbs up for the controversial Torre Pelli tower to be built in Sevilla.
Despite an outcry from local and international pressure groups, the United Nations cultural body insists that the 180-metre tower will not visually impair Sevilla’s famous landmarks.
The decision came despite the body’s own cultural boss arguing that Andalucia’s highest skyscraper will have a detrimental affect on the city’s top monuments.
Despite threats that its construction could lose the city its ‘world heritage’ status, it was given a provisional go ahead at the 34th session of the World Heritage Committee in Brazil.
The committee decided that the new headquarters for Spanish bank Cajasol would not affect monuments, including the Alcazar and Cathedral.
Maribel Montano, president of the local heritage committee in Sevilla, said that losing the city’s 1987 World Heritage Status “was completely ruled out”.
The committee has however commissioned a final report to be completed by July next year. By then, critics say the tower will be half built with its completion scheduled for the end of 2011.