The General Directorate of Old Town (DGCH, for its acronym in Spanish) of the City of Buenos Aires is an area under the Ministry of Culture that is in charge of conserving and developing the heritage of one of the oldest areas of the City Capital. Despite this, a report from the General Audit of the City (AGCBA, for its acronym in Spanish) indicates that this dependency participates informally in the delivery of subsidies destined to maintain the state of the buildings.

It is that, according to the control body, "there is no administrative act" that provides for the intervention of management in the distribution of funds. Regarding this, meanwhile, the auditors found that the financial aid was reduced 48.8% in two years, because they went from the $450 thousand in 2007 to $220 thousand in 2009. And something similar was recorded in the quantity of spare parts Carried out: while during the period 2006-2007 40 works were done, in 2009 only 12 works were carried out.

The report of the Buenos Aires Audit indicates that the area presents an old construction and of high patrimonial valuation, but that is inhabited by population of low resources that cannot face its maintenance; Hence the importance of economic aid. With regard to that, the AGCBA maintains that "it would be remarkable that the Ministry of Culture arbitrates the means to increase the amounts destined to the line of Cultural Heritage of the subsidies of the Program".

To carry out its tasks, the Management of the Historic District has a staff of 41 agents and, in 2009; its budget was $ 1,761,242. However, the Buenos Aires Audit pointed out that the agency does not have its own budget for the execution of works, but rather participates in projects and tenders that are subsequently executed by another Directorate of the Ministry of Culture, the Infrastructure and Maintenance Department.

The Historic Quarter is one of the oldest urban sectors of the City and includes the limits agreed in the "Plan San Telmo - Monserrat". In this area, the DGCH aims to implement the "Plan de Manejo del Casco Histórico" whose strategies are aimed at protecting and preserving historical, cultural, architectural and urban heritage; revitalize economic, cultural and tourist activities.


The Audit examined the programs within the “Plan de Manejo del Casco Histórico”. One of them is the Equipamiento Comunitario, which is aimed at improving and expanding the supply of common equipment and services, recovering the attraction of the sector.

The initiative seeks to compensate the situation of the population with lower resources, improve their living conditions and social integration. The Audit noted that during 2009 the program carried out a single activity: the development of a project for a youth center. The plan was carried out jointly between the Management and the California College of Arts of San Francisco of the United States. Although the DGCH reported that in June 2009 fifteen students from US universities arrived to prepare the preliminary draft, the AGCBA said that "there is no record of the existence of agreements or agreements that frame the development of said project."

The School

On the other hand, the Direction has a school in which are taught trades related to the care of the Historic Quarter. The Escuela Taller Program is justified by the need to restore buildings in the area deteriorated by the passage of time and lack of proper maintenance. In the Casco there is a strip of population unemployed or underemployed, with little possibility of being reinserted in the labor market. The Escuela Taller aims to recover craftsmanship in construction techniques, providing training, training and employment to those who are not yet included in the labor market.

The AGCBA pointed out that until the beginning of 2009, the Escuela Taller had two headquarters for its operation, one located in Moreno 301 and the other in Brazil 200. The first is owned by Banco Ciudad. The program began to operate there in December 2000. That building had been ceded through a loan agreement intended exclusively for the operation of the school. The contract expired in February 2008. In April 2009, the DGCH handed over the keys to the premises so that the General Directorate of Heritage and Historical Institute transferred the remains of an eighteenth-century galleon found in Puerto Madero. The City Audit indicates that, at the time of the closing of the report, the building had not been returned to the Historic District Office.

Regarding the building on the street Brazil, was assigned to work there Escuela Taller in December 2006. At that time signed a certificate of transfer and allocation of use for the school, until proceeding with the expansion of Paseo Colon Avenue. These works began in 2008, and the General Directorate of Accounting requested the return of the property. This request was suspended because the DGCH filed a precautionary measure that prevented demolition or modification of the property. Subsequently, and after decreasing the expiration of instance in the proceedings, the precautionary measure was lifted. Since then, the Department of Historic Affairs has issued notes to the under secretariat of Culture to obtain a concrete response on the situation of the property, "without any result until the date of this audit," the Buenos Aires body has completed.

Lastly, the AGCBA remarked that in 2009 the $ 1,761,775 budget was divided into two initiatives: Program 64, "Putting in value of the Historic District", in which $ 1,752,775 was used; and Program 65, "Escuela Taller", which was allocated $ 8,467. Regarding the latter, the auditors added that "the budget reduction for 2009 (of the school) is 97.10% compared to 2008 and 98% compared to 2007."