We recently met with Head of municipality Dr. Bilal Hamad for a quick update about René Moawad Garden; also known as Sanayeh garden.
This historical garden is the oldest in Beirut. It was first called The Hamidi Public Garden when it was first built in 1907; the public for decades referred to it as Sanayeh. It was then renamed in honor of President René Moawad who was assassinated on November 22, 1989 not far from the garden.
The garden is highly visited by the people, as it presents more than 22000m2 of open green space, one of the largest public spaces in the capital. However, it is in bad shape. In a series of interviews and surveys done by Green Line association in 2011, people mostly complained about:
– The toilets that are not working.
– The limited number of security guards.
– Lack of maintenance of the greenery and the big empty water fountain.
– The bad shape of the children’s play area.
Beirut Green Project and Green Line met with head of municipality Dr. Bilal Hamad two weeks ago to discuss a proposal of ideas for the park’s revival and enhancement. We were glad to hear about the municipality’s plan for renovating the park. They will be choosing a design for the park by the end of April 2012, and the renovations would start in Summer 2012. He announced that by 2013, the park would be renovated and ready. We discussed a few ideas to put in place, and he showed great interest for new ideas that would help revive and rehabilitate Sanayeh garden. He also told us that they are working on plans for rehabilitation for 2 of the other major parks in Beirut: Geitawi Park (a new design should be ready by the end of the month), and Sioufi Garden (new design to be ready in summer 2012).
We are meeting with him again in two weeks with a final proposal of ideas to adopt for Sanayeh park. And so we would like to hear from YOU!
Do you go to Sanayeh garden? Why or why not? What would you improve in it? Please take a few minutes to fill out this survey about Sanayeh garden to help us come to a complete proposal to the municipality.
If you also have old pictures of Sanayeh garden, please send them over to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line: Sanayeh garden picture.
Hopefully, this proposal will be worked on in partnership with the municipality of Beirut and applied to Sanayeh, serving as an example to be adapted to the other public gardens of the city.