Streets of Beirut XXXI

When the builders first arrived at a beautiful though dilapidated house nearby, they cleaned the debris from the triple arches in the façade, and for a while I wondered if the new owner planned to restore the property. A few days later a heap of rubble replaced the building, quashing this unrealistic hope. The bulldozer sits on high and the irreverent builders swarm over the stones.

destruction of Beirut houses

a fragment of daily life

Against a wall shared with an adjacent building, the kitchen tiling still clings, along with a cupboard with the front ripped off, exposing bottles of cooking oil and vinegar from decades past.

destroying Beirut's architectural heritage

stubborn cupboard

I was tickled to see that this one lonely cupboard gave the builders quite some trouble. They all had a go at removing it and still hadn’t succeeded by the time I moved on.

3 Responses to “Streets of Beirut XXXI”

  1. LebExile says:

    It’s unfortunate that they are removing these wonderful properties, however, the city has to evolve, and develop to adapt to changing needs.
    At least the more apartments there are will reduce pressue on prices!
    Here is an idea that could be adopted that could satify developers AND heritage advocates – why not incorporate some of the design features from the old beirut mansions in the new developments – ie, have some buildings where the first couple of floors have the triple arches, and a semi sandstone facade, with the building set back a couple of meters, and continues on. Just a thought!

  2. Mariam says:

    These pictures represent both a beautiful and sad past. It’s too bad this building has to go :(

    thanks for sharing though!

  3. Danielle says:

    So sad that people are not recognizing that once architectural hertiage is lost, it can never be regained. I’m thankful that I was able to see a bit of Lebanon’s former glory before it’s all taken down and replaced with soulless skyscrapers!

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