Cultural Heritage without Borders-Albania (CHwB Albania) has entrusted Fondazione Santagata to draft the Management Plan of the former Spaç Prison, in Albania.


An extraction mine since the 1930s, the site turned into a prison and forced labour camp for political prisoners in 1968, under Albania’s communist regime.

The prison was abandoned in the mid-1990s and was declared a monument of culture in 2007. Over the years the site has suffered from destruction, looting and neglect which caused irreparable damage.

To face this decline, CHwB Albania, in collaboration with the Ministry of Culture of Albania, has been working towards securing the physical stability of the remaining buildings of the prison and on the valorisation of the memory that the site carries. These objectives have been achieved by means of structural work on one hand, and extensive research and dissemination on the other.


Through this work, Fondazione Santagata, in partnership with ACNI and supported by a team of local experts, aims to achieve the following objectives:

  • Ensuring effective delivery of the management plan and alignment of institutional stakeholders at all levels
  • Honouring the memory of all those who suffered under the harsh conditions of Spaç Prison
  • Providing visitors with a human-focused ‘civic education’ that helps them to understand how oppression arises in society and impels them to take positive action, as individuals and as members of a society
  • Bridging remembrance and educational activities through reasoned and articulated visitor management
  • Creating a sustainable future for Spaç and activating the site as an important asset for local development


The work is structured as follows:

  • Preliminary assessment of challenges and risks for the management and business plan, and development of a stakeholder engagement strategy.
  • Proposal of ownership and governance structure through the definition of a legal, administrative and ownership framework
  • Implementation of consultation sessions with the stakeholders by various means
  • Definition of a conservation strategy and a roadmap for its implementation.
  • Definition of an operational strategy and drafting of a detailed actions plan for the management of the site and of a business plan
  • Presentation of the drafts and, upon receiving feedback, finalisation of the management and business plan.


The project aims to produce a Management Plan for the former prison of Spaç, including a Business Plan that shall support the model and a series of recommendations for correct implementation.

Through this work, the necessary tools to manage the site will be set out, to valorise and disseminate its history and continue the memory of those who suffered through imprisonment.


Cultural Heritage without Borders – Albania (CHwB – Albania)


Giulia Avanza
Paola Borrione
Martina De Gennaro