SIARG was created to have a shared approach to the conservation and enhancement of the Gier Roman Aqueduct.
The Syndicate’s function is to assist member communes in seeking funding from government and local bodies, as well as to advise on and coordinate their actions in protection of the aqueduct:
The Intercommunal Syndicate for the study of the Gier Roman Aqueduct was founded by prefectural decree on 15 July 1992. Paul Delorme, Mayor of Mornant was elected President.
The goal was to have an overall approach to the remains, to share expenses, notably for restoration, and to encourage communes to buy relevant parcels of land. From the start the idea of a footpath along the Aqueduct was envisaged.
Information boards indicating the presence of the Aqueduct have been installed in all member communes.
Over a period of several years the Syndicate has put in place signposts to help visitors easily find parts of the Aqueduct as well as information boards in French and English describing the principal remains.
At the start of the 2000s, a dossier was created to request that all of the Aqueduct and not just the well-known parts should be listed as an historic monument in France. This is an indispensable prerequisite for being able to ask UNESCO to award it World Heritage status.
While awaiting a response to this request from the Ministry of Culture, individual communes also made requests for all the remains in their territories.
Mr Paul Delorme, then Vice-President du Departmental Council, brought together an informal working group consisting not only of SIARG but also the tourist offices “Balcons du Lyonnais” and “Vallée du Garon”, and the heritage societies “Patrimoine en Pays Mornantais” and “l’Araire”. He also got involved all the different departments of the regional cultural service (DRAC). The Director of the service responsible for the listing of historic monuments outlined the difficulties involved in proving that the Aqueduct was a single 86km-long monument when up to then only separate parts of it had been listed. The other problem to be overcome was the taking into public ownership of the monument by land purchases.