Beirut National Library to open soon

A public library will open in a historic building now named Saraya el Hamra, which is located in the old Faculty of Law and Political Sciences at the Lebanese University in Sanayeh, in December.

The renovation and expansion will cost $25 million. Several donors, including Qatar and the Government, funded the project.

Saraya el Hamra will also comprise an auditorium, a faculty for religious dialogue, a museum for fine art, an open air museum for sculpture, and a national theater. Raymond Farhat, Chairman of the University Institution for Research and Development, who was behind the idea of using the building as a cultural center, said that these projects will open over time.

Saraya el Hamra will be managed by a consortium representing the ministries of Culture, Tourism, Information, and Education.

Farhat said that there is a plan to expand the Saraya to include the Ministry of Interior building. He said that several donors, including Turkey, showed their interest in renovating the building as a cultural center.