Rue Gouraud (Gemmayze) to be closed for one month

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Who the hell comes up with a decision like that? Closing down Gemmayze street(Rue Gouraud) for a whole month during July & August? The busiest months in the summer?

Let’s not forget that Ramadan starts on the 20th of July as well, the best time for many Lebanese and tourists to go out and have iftars.

If I were the minister of tourism, I would stop those works at any cost.

22 thoughts on “Rue Gouraud (Gemmayze) to be closed for one month

      1. Mark

        Restaurants actually do horribly during Ramadan. That’s why a lot of them close down during Ramadan to do their revamp or facelifting work. Iftar is usually done at home with family.

  1. Bacha

    The street clearly needed renovation. No matter what the timing for it is, there will always be criticism.

    However, I understand the frustration of some bar owners. A few years ago, the same strategy was used to kill monot street. Does anyone remember that?
    Rumor had it that it was planned by SOLIDERE to attract people towards downtown. Too bad for them, Gemmayze was born.

    1. Najib Post author

      Why does it need renovation? They are not going to fix the electricity cables and stuff, they are probably going to fuck up the roads which are decent there.

      This is a very bad time and they should have done it in winter. Screw Solidere Gemmayze bar owners should stop those works ASAP.

      1. Bacha

        It’s hard to take a stand considering that we don’t know the purpose of the works.

        However, I wouldn’t consider the street as decent. Maybe by “road” you’re referring to the asphalt, but as an urban designer I was assuming the works would entail revamping sidewalks and the whole building-public interface, which is currently, imho, in a poor condition.
        By the way, a visual impact assessment study on gemmayze was done and it turned out that what bothers people most are the visible air conditionning compressors, not the electrical wirings (I guess people got used to these).

        Our lovely authorities aren’t really into urban planning and the works probably are just another infrastructural initiative, with no beautification intent whatsoever.

  2. Aliman

    Firstly it wouldnt beSsolidere doing the works and they dont have anything to do with Gemmayze for your info.
    Secondly im sure our genius Minister of (no) Tourism coordinated with our even more of a genius Minister of Interior, That since this year because of their brilliance we dont have a tourist season, might as well do some renovation.

  3. lila

    Instead of that I’d renovate the old buildings in Gemayzeh,preserve the heritage and invest in a decent parking spot

  4. Mark

    They’re probably closing it now because they know during Ramadan business is going to be very slow there. Muslims will refrain from drinking during Ramadan even if they are not fasting out of respect for the month. Plus the amount of tourists decreases during Ramadan because Muslims prefer to spend Ramadan in their home countries.

    So actually from all months of the year they chose the right one. I’m sure the pubs and restaurants on that street are in agreement on this and I’m guessing many will take this opportunity to renovate themselves.

    1. Najib Post author

      Summer is always the busiest time for Gemmayze whether there’s Ramadan or not. The past two years have been really bad but it’s always crowded the most in July-August.

      1. Mark

        Yeah except this July August is Ramadan so that’s not going to be a normal summer. If local Muslims and Muslim tourists stop going to Gemmayze that’s a large chunk of their traffic which is why it a perfect time to close the street for renovations.

        1. Najib Post author

          Summer is never a good time to close down Gemmayze whether it’s Ramadan or not. The bars never really depended on Arab tourists as much as Lebanese expats and Europeans and the locals themselves.

          Speaking of Muslims, I am not sure how big is the percentage of those who stopped drinking in Ramadan. After all, you shouldn’t be drinking at all whether it’s Ramadan or not for a Muslim.

          You just can’t kill a vital street like Gemmayze at times like that. You can do that in the winter when the bars were almost empty cause of the bad weather.

          Plus where are they going to find workers during Ramadan? Most of them go back home or don’t work all day. It will never end in a month time.

          1. Mark

            Well think of it this way. Their cliental are usually:

            Arab Christians
            Arab Muslims
            Christian Tourists/Expats
            Muslim Tourists/Expats

            Now remove the Arab Muslims and the Muslim Tourists. Plus consider the fact this isn’t a great year for tourism in Lebanon either. Business is clearly going to be very slow in August.

  5. Alphonse

    What if the commotion does not end in one month???

    Renovating sidewalks, if that is the case, does not require shutting down a road.. so i guess it’s a big project.
    It is a big risk, as we have seen dozens of roads (in and around BCD-SOLIDERE) closed for 5-7 months in the past.

    Happy New Year GEMMAYZE..

  6. mo fayad

    i do not think the street need renovation ! especially that state urban planners & architects will make it ugly .. renovation sucks in this country ,, new pavements hhave no character & please spare me with alico bond & gypsum facades … BALAD mazawzak mzwwaz … unless the works involve only cables & pipes , RENOVATION IS NOT NECESSARY

      1. Danielle

        Well, no-car access could be a good thing for pedestrians visiting Gemmayze. Think of Jbeil (at least now during the music festival): it’s so much safer and easier to stroll through the old souk and Mina lined with pubs and restaurants than it used to be, when pedestrians used to fight with cars for the tight road clearance. But in either case, a massive parking structure near the area is a must.

  7. Desmond Bey

    I live on Gouraud Street near Le Chef and that part had regular traffic this morning, but the street leading down to Pasteur Street (opposite the gas station) was closed.
    Go figure.
    The problem with road works in Lebanon is that the moment they fill everything in and leave is the moment another crew comes and digs it all up again to do something else.

  8. Nadine

    for me that’s good news, i’v never used my car to pass in Gemmayze, it takes max 10min to walk the street from start to end.
    the street must be accessible for all cars during the day and only for gemmazye resident at night.


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