UNESCO, in cooperation with the Egyptian Ministry of Culture and the Governorate of Luxor, will organize the first Scientific Committee meeting on the safeguarding project of New Gourna Village in Luxor, Egypt. The UNESCO initiative aims to assist the Government of Egypt in its efforts to preserve this precious heritage situated within the World Heritage property of Ancient Thebes. New Gourna Village was designed and built by the famous Egyptian architect, Hassan Fathy (1900-1989), to shelter the community of Old Gourna.
Fathy's work took 6 years to complete, with design work starting in 1946 and construction ending in 1952. The village's characteristics bring to fruition the idea that, with the aid of local materials and techniques, sustainable human development and social cohesion can be met with vernacular architecture.
The Scientific Committee is composed of 14 renowned international experts of Hassan Fathy's work and philosophy who will advise in the development of the project strategy.
The main goals of the initiative are to rehabilitate this important architectural heritage, as well as to valorize Fathy's ground-breaking ideas and revive their relevance to contemporary sustainable architecture. The three-year project will be implemented within the framework of the World Heritage Earthen Architecture Programme, which was launched in 2007.