(Dean-Queen Rania Institute of Tourism and Heritage, The Hashemite University, Zarqa, Jordan)
The signing of the Middle East peace treaty in Wadi Araba in the early nineties has led to a sudden upsurge of tourist arrivals to Petra. In response to this, many projects designed to develop Tourism Infrastructure and Services were carried out in a frenzy of activities that often were not very carefully considered in terms of their Environmental and Cultural Heritage impacts. In this paper a number of impacts are discussed and analyzed as a study case exemplifying the need to carefully plan in order to attain Sustainable Tourism and minimize the encroachment on such an important site. Expansion of roads, the stablishment of a wastewater treatment plant and the rapid development of hotels are all discussed. Mitigation measures during the construction of the sewage system included salvage excavation operations, that are often necessary during heavy works. The results depend on the use of satellite imagery as well as field observations. Computer aided image analysis and classification simplifies the analysis and reduces the time alloted to the fieldwork.
THE IMPACT OF TOURISM DEVELOPMENT ON PETRA-JORDAN