Wednesday, June 25, 2014

News, Giza: Giza Plateau to be revamped, with peddlers removed, horse rides regulated

First phase of a new rehabilitation project will regulate the price of horse and camel rides and place souvenir peddlers in a designated area

El-Damaty at Giza Plateau
A plan to restore Giza Plateau after three years of neglect since Egypt's 2011 uprising is set to kick off within two weeks, says the antiquities ministry.

A ministerial committee comprised of antiquities and heritage minister Mamdouh El-Damaty, tourism minister Hisham Zaazou and Giza governor Ali-Abdel Rahman has toured the site several times to gauge its condition and has decided to launch the first phase of the rehabilitation process.

These first steps include repaving all the roads within the grounds as well as installing signs to direct visitors and provide information about the sites. Other signs will be installed to inform tourists of the official ticket prices and the costs of activities like horse and camel riding.

Tourists have long complained over the pushy nature of touts offering horse and camel rides on the grounds, especially since there are no fixed prices – a problem that the signs should fix, said El-Damaty, the antiquities minister.

Peddlers – another source of harassment – will be placed in a designated zone outside the archaeological site at the Mena House Hotel, at the plateau's entrance.

Other plans for the first phase include a parking lot and erecting a large wall to enclose the plateau. The sound and light show will also be revamped and operating again.

The ministry is in the process of coming up with the required budget to complete a planned visitors centre at the plateau, said El-Damaty.

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