How can you assess the impact of your work on archaeological heritage?

When an accidental discovery of archaeological remains is made during development works, the work must be halted immediately until archaeological investigations have been carried out on the site concerned.

This is why the Ministry of Culture and the National Institute of Archaeological Research (Institut national des recherches archéologiques - INRA) have introduced the concept of preventive archaeology, which aims to:

  • reconcile the interests of the developer with those of scientific research; and
  • safeguard archaeological heritage.

In practice, all planned construction, demolition or backfill and excavation works which are subject to a building or demolition permit on land located in an archaeological observation zone (ZOA) must be submitted by the project owner to the Minister of Culture for an impact assessment of these works on the archaeological heritage, at the latest when the application for the building or demolition permit is submitted.

For further information on the assessment of works located in an archaeological observation zone, read our new information page.

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