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LEBANON: Historic houses in Beirut are falling victim to a massive building boom despite efforts by Lebanese conservationists

Like an endangered species, Beirut's elegant old buildings are staring at extinction. In a construction frenzy fuelled by a frothy economy and dollops of cash from Gulf Arab and Lebanese investors, new tower blocks are rising helter-skelter across the capital, many of them over the demolished ruins of its architectural heritage. A few conservationists are trying to save something from the wreckage, but in a city where money is king, it may be too late. Pascale Ingea, a shy, soft-spoken 33-year-o...

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Category:History Industry
Reference:21773/10
Tape:0
Timecode: -
Duration:00:04:00:02
Sound:NATURAL WITH ARABIC SPEECH
Copyright:GRAPHIC
Feed:News
Syndication:7049ME LEBANON-OLD BUILDINGS @ Aug 29
Restrictions:Information for Reuters subscribers only: NONE
Note:Tape timecodes are in use for this item
LegacyConverted:0
Source:DAM

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Clip 1 of 2 (Copyright: REUTERS)

BEIRUT, LEBANON (RECENT) (REUTERS) VIEW OF HIGH-RISE BUILDING IN BEIRUT BEING CONSTRUCTED NEXT TO AN OLD BEIRUT HOUSE ROOF OF AN OLD BEIRUT HOUSE WINDOW OF THE OLD HOUSE RED TILES ON ROOF OF OLD HOUSE OLD HOUSES IN BEIRUT STREET VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF AN OLD ABANDONED BUILDING IN BEIRUT (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE CONSERVATIONIST PASCALE INGEA SAYING: "For the past six months, I wake up every day and watch a house being destroyed. Before it was every six months, then every month, then it became every week and finally now every two or three days, I see a house being destroyed." FACADE OF OLD BUILDING IN BEIRUT WHERE INTERIOR IS IN RUINS VARIOUS OF DILAPIDATED BUILDING (6 SHOTS) (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE CONSERVATIONIST PASCALE INGEA SAYING: "We are trying to do some lobbying and to raise awareness as much as we can among the public. We are now targeting schools and university students and holding conferences." ERODED BALCONY (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE CONSERVATIO...

BEIRUT, LEBANON (RECENT) (REUTERS) VIEW OF HIGH-RISE BUILDING IN BEIRUT BEING CONSTRUCTED NEXT TO AN OLD BEIRUT HOUSE ROOF OF AN OLD BEIRUT HOUSE WINDOW OF THE OLD HOUSE RED TILES ON ROOF OF OLD HOUSE OLD HOUSES IN BEIRUT STREET VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF AN OLD ABANDONED BUILDING IN BEIRUT (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE CONSERVATIONIST PASCALE INGEA SAYING: "For the past six months, I wake up every day and watch a house being destroyed. Before it was every six months, then every month, then it became every week and finally now every two or three days, I see a house being destroyed." FACADE OF OLD BUILDING IN BEIRUT WHERE INTERIOR IS IN RUINS VARIOUS OF DILAPIDATED BUILDING (6 SHOTS) (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE CONSERVATIONIST PASCALE INGEA SAYING: "We are trying to do some lobbying and to raise awareness as much as we can among the public. We are now targeting schools and university students and holding conferences." ERODED BALCONY (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE CONSERVATIONIST PASCALE INGEA SAYING: "This historic house is not the property of the owner of the house only. It is true that legally the house is the owner's but it is also belongs to all Lebanese people. This is called the ''bien commun'' - the common good - for all the people."

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Clip 2 of 2 (Copyright: REUTERS)

VARIOUS OF OLD RENOVATED HOUSES IN GEMMAYZEH DISTRICT IN BEIRUT (3 SHOTS) (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE RESIDENT OF THE GEMMAYZEH NEIGHBOURHOOD, SAYING: "For 43 years, since it is was founded until today, there is no state in this country. There is a lot of talk, if you listen to it you'll be happy but if you try it out you'll be saddened. This is the way the country is. If the government did not inherently accept this, not one stone would have fallen." MORE OF DILAPIDATED HOUSE (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE RESIDENT OF THE GEMMAYZEH NEIGHBOURHOOD, SAYING: "We would like to have our old heritage left intact, our neighbourhood has one of the best old houses, they are a pleasure to look at. And then they are building these high-rises that cut off the air and the sun. If there is an earthquake, no one will be left. It is a pity, a real pity to destroy these beautiful buildings." CONSTRUCTION WORKERS ON TOP OF HIGH-RISE BUILDING BEING BUILT...

VARIOUS OF OLD RENOVATED HOUSES IN GEMMAYZEH DISTRICT IN BEIRUT (3 SHOTS) (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE RESIDENT OF THE GEMMAYZEH NEIGHBOURHOOD, SAYING: "For 43 years, since it is was founded until today, there is no state in this country. There is a lot of talk, if you listen to it you'll be happy but if you try it out you'll be saddened. This is the way the country is. If the government did not inherently accept this, not one stone would have fallen." MORE OF DILAPIDATED HOUSE (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) LEBANESE RESIDENT OF THE GEMMAYZEH NEIGHBOURHOOD, SAYING: "We would like to have our old heritage left intact, our neighbourhood has one of the best old houses, they are a pleasure to look at. And then they are building these high-rises that cut off the air and the sun. If there is an earthquake, no one will be left. It is a pity, a real pity to destroy these beautiful buildings." CONSTRUCTION WORKERS ON TOP OF HIGH-RISE BUILDING BEING BUILT

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