The Fouad Boutros Highway (Image courtesy of Save Beirut Heritage)

According to NowLebanon, the controversial Fouad Boutros Highway project was given the green light and will kick off in few weeks time. As per Save Beirut Heritage, the Fouad Boutros highway project will destroy 28 heritage landmarks, endanger 30 more, and uproot thousands of meters of lush green spaces in the Ashrafieh, Hekmeh and Mar Mikhail neighborhoods.

To be honest, I was surprised the issue was only raised now or at least given that much spotlight as it seems the project had gone a long way already and was technically a done deal. Added to that, I am asking around to see if the project will endanger that many houses and green spaces as I’ve heard otherwise. Of course, this doesn’t make the project any better but there’s a missing side to the story that must be clarified here.

I wish more talks would take place between Activists/NGOs and Achrafieh’s MPs or concerned officials in order to discuss these matters and find compromises. CDR, the company in charge of the new thoroughfare in conjunction with the municipality, as well as the municipality should assign a person to talk about this matter and shed the light on all its details.

I truly hope it doesn’t turn out to be like the highway connecting Achrafieh to Dekwaneh because it has left an everlasting damage on Burj Hammoud residents.

Alex Nicolas
Picture from The BeirutReport via Save Beirut Heritage

Alex Nicolas photo
Picture from The BeirutReport via Save Beirut Heritage