Sunday, April 10, 2005

Grand Egyptian Museum
April seems to be the month for museums in Egypt. The latest announcement concerns a fund-raising campaign for the Grand Egyptian Museum. Designed by a prize-winning architectural frm, the museum is described as "making more than a passing nod to the landscape of the desert". It will be located on the Giza Plateau, near the Great Pyramids, and will house collections organized by theme. There will also be an auditorium, conference rooms and other facilities. It seems unclear where the money is coming from, however. Farouk Hosni asked, in a speech to a press conference, for the international community to to help raise the funding necessary for the project, projected at $550,000,000, and also suggested that local support from Egypt might be appropriate, perhaps by public subscription. The World Bank have declined to invest in the project. They are hoping that the project will be completed (the museum, not the fund-raising) by 2009. The current Cairo museum in Tahrir Square will continue to house some 10,000 artefacts after the GEM is constructed.

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