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Beirut municipality fails, again, to preserve green spaces

The destruction of one of Beirut’s last green spaces, as well as the eviction of several startups, points to the government's disregard of the public sector.

The recent destruction of the historic Mufti Hassan Khaled Garden in Beirut’s Tallet el-Khayat neighborhood points to a harrowing future for the city’s environmental spaces. The park will be replaced with a parking lot, to host some 2,000 cars, as part of a citywide effort to provide alternative parking systems. The project has enraged civil society activists, who view this as further encroachment on the city's dwindling public spaces. Another park will be rebuilt atop the parking lot.

Demolition began the second week of August, but after a few weeks of work, the Directorate General of Antiquities (DGA) sent a team to the site and work suddenly stopped. A source inside the DGA said that though nothing of archaeological value was yet found, work stopped because protocol had not been followed.

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