This two year project focused on the documentation, conservation and adaptive re-use of vernacular built heritage to address severe conflict damage in As-Samou'
Located in the southernmost part of the West Bank, the ancient city of As-Samou’ is richly embellished with cultural heritage. A Roman temple, the remains of the city walls, a historic tower and an ancient synagogue are among the most important heritage assets of the city.
In addition to these archaeological assets, As-Samou’ is host to vernacular heritage in the form of a large number of built ensembles or compounds (ahwash), that demonstrate the local architectural style, a mix of ‘historic’ construction materials and techniques.
The project proposal submitted by HYDEA and partners, the Municipality of As Samou’ and HCE Habash Consulting Engineers was endorsed by the British Council within the framework of the Cultural Protection Fund a £30 million operation, supporting efforts to keep cultural heritage sites and objects safe, as well as the documentation, conservation and restoration of cultural heritage.
In this two-year project, young apprentices will be trained in cultural heritage conservation and the management of the sites.
The project includes the identification, documentation and assessment of buildings in the ahwash, with a view to simple excavations, if valuable remains are discovered.
A pilot restoration project will be run at hosh Al-Aqeeli which will provide training for 20 apprentices and labourers, with a focus on involving underemployed or unemployed engineers, architects and craftsmen. In addition to this, a new cultural youth centre will be established, and educational activities will be brought to the local community.