Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Seen in Downtown Cairo : Renovated Sherifeen street

On 18 April, the Egyptian government and Cairo governorate inaugurated the Sherifeen Street after its renovation as part of the Khedival Downtown Cairo renovation project.

I went there to see what happened and how the renovation went in a quick visit and I am currently so happy with what I saw for real.
El-Sherifeen Street after renovation
El-Sherifeen Street after renovation 
It was inaugurated on the 18 April as it marks the Heritage World Day.

Cairo's Sherifeen street after renovation
No cars are allowed in the narrow street now
That’s the first stage of renovation in the area known as “El-Borsa” area or “The stock market triangle” as Egypt ’s main Stock exchange of Cairo is located in the street. It took LE 10 million to renovate the first stage.
Cairo's Sherifeen Street after renovation
El Sherifeen street after renovation
There are 30 buildings registered in that street or area as heritage building including banks, a hotel, residential and business buildings in addition to shops that probably 100 years ago.
I believe it is more than just painting the old buildings that suddenly came alive with those beautiful palm trees and lights that turn the area into a joyful place in the area.

Renovated balconies at Sherifeen street
Celebratory lights were installed on the buildings in the first part of the street 
Cars not allowed in the street except one car which is owned by the head of Cairo’s stock exchange.
The renovation works in the area has not finished yet and the workers are still doing their job to renovate and beautify the triangle whether by planting palm trees and regular trees or renovating the old buildings.

Renovation works are still there
Renovation works still continue in the street
The passageways between buildings and other streets are still renovated.
A passageway's renovation goes on
This passageway is still renovated 
Those passageways should look like that in the end I expect.

passageways renovated in Downtown Cairo
A passageway after renovation 
The renovation is funded by several local and foreign banks including National Bank of Egypt and Suez Canal Bank as they own buildings in that triangle.
Suez Canal bank has got a beautiful bank branch at a corner of Sherifeen street.
Suez bank branch at Sherifeen street
Suez Canal Bank's branch
Suez Canal Bank allocated LE 2 million to renovate that branch.
NBE funded the renovation of 15 buildings it owns in the area.
I believe the renovation of the Downtown Cairo is getting better and better.

That renovation and beautification of the street reminded me with the photos of the renovated Downtown Beirut.
In its heyday, Sherifeen street was among the important streets in Cairo as it hosts the Egyptian Stock exchange as well the Old Egyptian state radio headquarters.

The Egyptian State radio headquarter was transferred to the Egyptian Radio and Television “ERTU” aka Maspero building in Maspero triangle in July 1960 but the building has been still operating as a headquarter of Local radio stations network

Egypt's Great Cairo Radio station building at Sherifeen Street
The greater Cairo radio station headquarter

It has been hosting State-owned Radio Greater Cairo radio station as well the management of the provinces radio stations aka the local radio stations network.
That building already is a treasure in its own way.
I can’t even recount the historical events it witnessed or broadcasted or how it gave birth to stars that shaped arts and entertainment in the Arab world in the 20th century.
The street is still important thanks for the Egyptian Stock exchange.
Egypt's Stock Market in Cairo's Sherifeen Street after renovation
The stock market exchange of Cairo on the left
The building of the Egyptian stock exchange in Cairo hosts a museum which one day hopefully I will visit one day to know the history of the oldest stock exchange in the Middle East and Africa.

The Sherifeen street’s local cheap cafes played an indirect role in the Egyptian political activism in the last 15 years, especially after the revolution.
For many activists , it was a gathering place to meet with friends and comrades in Downtown Cairo.
It was also the place where many political activists were arrested by authorities in crackdowns since 2013.
Once a veteran socialist activist told me that many of those cafes’ owners turned in to informants to security forces to avoid closing down by municipal workers.
It is karma perhaps that now Cairo governorate listens to the residents who really had enough from the noise of those cafes and thus no cafes would be allowed in that new era.

The street looks like a time capsule especially with its the old shops and workshops like that old shop and tailor William
William , le chemiser
William Chemiser
Or that Mid-century furniture store “El-Bahy”.
A furniture store in Cairo's Sherifeen Street
El Bahy Furinture shop 
Here is one of the residents of Sherifeen street enjoying a moment in the shade on a sunny day.

The black cat at a shop in Cairo's Sherifeen Street

Cairo is not an ugly city , it just needs a care to revive its forever after beauty.

1 comment:

  1. Nice! Reminiscent of any downtown in Europe. Now do the rest of Egypt.


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