Sunday, August 19, 2007

More re Al-Azhar Park visitor centre

Travel Industry Review

Under the auspices of Egypt’s Culture Minister Farouk Hosni, the secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA), Dr. Zahi Hawass, and the Aga Khan Trust for Culture’s (AKTC) general manager Mr. Luis Monreal signed today a memorandum of understanding finalizing the establishment of a temporary restoration lab at Salaheddin Citadel and a visitor center at the Urban Plaza at the northern end of the Al-Azhar Park close to the end of the 12th century Ayyubid Wall.

The Urban Plaza project will be a mixed-use center with underground car parking, shops and cultural facilities, including a small museum essaying the history of Cairo since the ancient Egyptian era until the modern time through displays of great treasures and collection of artefacts that have never been on exhibit before.Hawass explained that these antiquities will be carefully selected from the Islamic and Coptic Museums in Cairo as well as the Salaheddin Citadel storehouses and Matariya archaeological sites. The museum will also give visitors insight into the urban, cultural and architectural history of the heart of Cairo.

The laboratory will conserve and restore all the ancient pieces and artwork to be displayed in the museum, as well as those of the Museum of Islamic Art, due to open in 2007. Training courses for young technicians in this field will be provided.

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