Beirut, Lebanon, 2007
Due to the flurry of reconstruction in the 1990’s, buildings from the late ottoman and French mandate period were disappearing fast in the peri-center of Beirut. In 1996, the Ministry of Culture imposed a freeze on all building activity on pre-1945 structures. A public uproar ensued. The P.M then set a committee of five architects with the Directorate General of Urbanism to look into the problem. We proposed five conservation areas, protecting the buildings within their environment and dealing with issues of parking, infrastructure, compensation etc.
The plan was approved by the Higher Council of Urbanism on January 7 1998. The government however did not endorse the plan due to political pressure.