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CHAMPION OF THE DAY
National Museum revamped
The National Museum will reopen its basement floor late next year, having been closed for 39 years, due to the damage it sustained in the Civil War.
The funds for the restoration of the floor are being provided through the collaboration, agreed to last July, of the Italian Cooperation Office in Beirut, the Italian Embassy and Lebanon’s Ministry of Culture.
The €1.02 million ($1.3 million) will revamp the entire space, and once completed will display over 400 archeological funerary art objects gathered from around the country will be displayed on this floor. The largest anthropoid sarcophaguses in the world, totaling 31, will be displayed for the first time, said Anne Marie Ofeich, Director of the National Museum.
Further restorations to the National Museum are planned, according to Ofeich, which will add an underground floor beneath the garden to be used as an event venue. Another room will be added to serve as the museum’s cafeteria.
Ofeich said that the National Heritage Foundation, headed by former First Lady, Mona Heraoui, is financing this project. “The terms of reference were prepared and an agreement signed between the foundation and the MoC, but the project won’t be finalized before two years.”
The museum consists of three floors, totaling 3,000 square meters, with the basement floor occupying 700 m2.
In 2010, a project funded by the same grantors restored the ‘Tomb of Tyre’ monument in the basement floor, for €200,000 ($272,000).
After the Civil War, the National Museum was partially reopened in 1997 and became officially operational in 1999.
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Nov 21, 2014
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