The protection and conservation of Albi’s heritage
Cité épiscopale d’Albi
In January 1968 an inter-ministerial decree created a protected site in Albi. In 1978 a town contract was established which launched the rehabilitation of the ancient centre of Albi and became, with time, a concerted effort to rehabilitate the buildings and major monuments of the Episcopal city and the surrounding buffer zone.
Since then the town has seen restructuring works on the Berbie palace, home to the Toulouse-Lautrec museum (a global investment of 27 million Euros), the creation of a pedestrianised zone and the modification of the place Sainte-Cécile, the renovation of the façades of old Albi and of the interior courts of many buildings, the improvement the ’liveability’ of the town and programmes for urban repopulation, the revitalisation of the town’s shops and the market hall... so many initiatives which allow us to rediscover Albi’s site of exceptional but universal heritage: the Episcopal city.
This demonstrates the importance of the preservation and management of Albi’s heritage, today and into the future, in the town’s urban project.
It is in this sense that the town of Albi is committed to launching important new initiatives, complementing those already in place. The numerous projects conducted since the 1980’s, and intensified in the last decade, bear witness to the town’s dedication.
The restructuring of the Toulouse-Lautrec museum is in its third and final stage. This project is the Ministry of Culture’s most important heritage programme in the region. Not far from here, the Cathedral has already been the object of significant restoration, seeing the restoration of the baldaquin’s sculptures and, in particular, the spectacular restoration of the frescoes on the vaults of the two chapels of the northern tribune which has restored the original colours.
Significant investment has been undertaken by all the principle institutions concerned, over many years, to preserve and promote the site.
Other projects are in the pipeline to improve the management of the protected site, to pursue programmes of urban improvement and to continue the renovation of the façades and inner courtyards of the historic centre.
Supplementary regulations are envisaged such as the creation of a protected zone ensuring the conservation of landscapes and urban architecture in order to preserve the views of the Episcopal city.