Ministry of Public Works launches old urban centres regeneration programme to preserve country’s rural heritage

Editorial team)- Walking through the narrow streets of several Tunisian towns, especially in the capital, you will certainly notice a number of old districts and buildings with unique architecture dating back to very distant times, including the colonial period. However, these dilapidated buildings of great historical and cultural value have lost their charm and are even in danger of collapsing due to lack of maintenance. In the old city of Tunis, some buildings have become ruins or even rubbish dumps, containing all kinds of waste and emitting unpleasant odours. In order to save this heritage and reintegrate it into the economic and tourist cycle, the Ministry of Public Works and Housing has launched the Programme for the Regeneration of Old Urban Centres (PRCA), which aims to protect part of Tunisia's architectural "memory". "This 36-month programme aims to intervene in these areas of high architectural value in order to rehabilitate them and reintegrate them economically and socially as part of a comp rehensive and integrated strategy," Ines Zebiba, head of the PRCA programme (part of the Ministry of Public Works), said in a statement to TAP. She added that on July 12, 2022, agreements were signed with 10 municipalities, namely Sousse, Nefta, Kairouan, Nabeul, Monastir, Rades, Medenine, Kelibia, Ras El Jebel and Aousja, to finance and carry out rehabilitation work. The official pointed out that this programme will have a positive impact not only on the urban environment in terms of improving infrastructure and preserving old buildings, but also on the quality of life of the inhabitants. Indeed, these interventions will create a favourable framework for the launch of new economic and social activities capable of boosting the development of these districts, she said. She also pointed out that a budget of around TND 50 million had been mobilised to finance all the measures under the PRCA programme. These concerned in particular the improvement of urban infrastructure (sewers, roads, public lighting, etc.), the rehabilitation of public spaces in coordination with the municipalities, the enhancement of the cultural heritage through the renovation and restoration of historic buildings and the promotion of economic, commercial and craft activities,as well as the creation of tourist circuits and the renovation of a number of housing units. Source: EN - Agence Tunis Afrique Presse

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