Fouad Boutros passed away. He was one of Lebanon’s most irreproachable and prominent politicians. He was known for his high integrity and for his constant search of public good in whatever position he held, in the several ministries he headed, including the “Ministère du Plan”, the pre-war equivalent of a Ministry of Urbanism.
This great man’s name should not be given to an urban aberration, to a failed highway project, disqualified by every single urban professional in the country. Fouad Boutros should be honored with a project that truly serves public good, which will change city life for the better and offer its citizens something that they truly need.
The Civil Coalition advocates the creation of the Fouad Boutros Park, along the trail the highway was supposed to follow. The municipality of Beirut owns around 20 historic buildings and thousands of square meters of gardens, that have been expropriated before 1975. It is a unique, golden opportunity to do something undoubtedly good for the city, to offer citizens a new green, natural public space, and a cultural hub.
Fouad Boutros was minister of urbanism: let’s create a positive urban gesture that makes sense for the city! He was minister of education: let’s honor him with a place where culture is held high! He was minister of tourism: let’s turn the Hekmeh neighborhood into a heritage quarter attractive for visitors! He was a celebrated diplomat, let’s build a participative project, shared by the Municipality, Beirut’s citizens, the local inhabitants and civil society. Let’s imagine a project which would be a true legacy to Fouad Boutros’s career and achievements!