Thursday, August 28, 2008

Update re Grand Museum in Cairo

Egypt State Information Service

"The second phase of establishing the new Grand Museum is nearing completion," Minister of Culture Farouk Hosni said during the press conference which he held on Monday 25/8/2008 after his meeting with the international teamwork, chaired by the British expert Stephen Grenburg who is charged with designing the Grand Egyptian Museum.

He added that the museum will be an architectural and civilizational masterpiece by all means to be added to the great works of the ancient Egyptians.

The museum is being established on 117 feddans on the Cairo-Alexandria desert road at a total cost of $300 million.

The Minister said the designs of the third phase are almost finished. “We have six months to go,” he noted.

He said the main building of the museum will be opened in 2011, adding that the museum would display up to 100,000 monuments and artifacts.

Hosni projected that up to seven million tourists would visit the museum annually after its opening.

Egypt Daily Star News

The project kicked off in February 2002 when President Hosni Mubarak lay the first brick of the foundation at the sprawling construction site.

The decision came after authorities realized the Egyptian Museum in Tahir Square, located in the heart of Cairo, was overflowing with artifacts.

“The Egyptian Museum now is so crammed with artifacts. It is going to stay but we will be relocating some artifacts,” explained Salah.

“The new museum will be able to accommodate 15,000 visitors per day. The place is breathtaking especially with the Pyramids in the background,” he added.

However, not everyone is hailing the move. Renowned Egyptian architect Mamdouh Hamza disagreed with the Ministry of Culture’s decision to build the GEM in Remaya Square, saying that the area is congested with traffic and the museum will only cause more traffic problems. The atmosphere will be inappropriate for tourists, he added, since the area is also heavily polluted.

Hamza also said that not enough studies were conducted before deciding on the location.

No comments: