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JustHere | November 15, 2017

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Msheireb Art Centre to low-income housing: Glimpses of the old, within the new downtown

As Doha’s new downtown at Msheireb marches towards completion, Doha resident and photographer Aparna Jayakumar, captures the last few spots of the old Mshiereb.

She shares with JustHere its story through her lens.

  • The Msheireb Arts Centre is located in a converted 1950s school building which was the first ever girls' school in the country. The centre houses the 'Sadaa Al Thikrayat', or 'Echo Memory' Project, an artist-led initiative.
  • An old classroom in the school-turned-art centre. The Echo Memory Project records stories and memories from Msheireb, Qatar's earliest suburb. Read more about it here:
  • An old home, housing low income migrant workers, that hasn't yet given way to a new building.
  • Hanging up the blue overalls for the day... an old-style building with a central courtyard.
  • The Doha downtown architecture from a few decades ago. There are few such buildings left in the city now.

Msheireb Downtown Doha, a QR20 billion project, is scheduled for completion by 2016. The project is divided into six phases, and currently Phase 1 is almost complete. This includes the Amiri Diwan Quarter, the National Archive and four heritage houses that will be converted into museums, in addition to a mosque and Doha’s Eid prayer ground.

Massive demolition works began in 2010, bringing down all the old eateries, supermarkets and stores in the area that once was a bustling commercial centre.

What do you remember of the old Msheireb?

[Photos courtesy: Aparna Jaykumar. Follow her on Instagram: @Aparna_Jay]

Check out our earlier photo features on Muntazah and areas around Umm Ghuwalina.

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