Sunday, June 15, 2008

Cairo. Crazy

Downtown Cairo

Buildings Continue to Grow

Futbal in Boulak

Giza. En Route to the Pyramids


Al Dharb Al Ahmad

Never Finished

Twenty million people. The densest metropolitan area in the world. The crushing urbanity of Cairo and intense demand for space has created a city unlike any I have ever seen. The explosive growth of the city, with its deep historical roots, fertile land, corrupt beauracracies, and creativity of people has produced a city of constant, incredible, and powerful transformations. Grids of agricultural plots are replaced by the grids of concrete columns, beams and bricks. Tombs of the dead are replaced by homes of the alive. Rooftops are transformed into homes, birdcages, garbage storage, and a sea of satellite dishes. Sidewalks are turned into parking lots, streets are turned into sidewalks. Alleys are turned into soccer pitches. The desert is transformed into golf courses, private villas and shopping centers. A one bedroom apartment is transformed into a two bedroom apartment, a fish market, and a computer repair shop. Cairo is being transformed into….?????

It feels like an absolute disaster, I can’t figure out how it functions, the smog is oppressive, the traffic hurts, the buildings are crumbling. Yet, I am so drawn to it….

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