The Association of Palestinian Local Authorities (APLA) conducted a workshop through the Engineering and Planning Hub on the role of local authorities in preserving and maintaining heritage, with the participation of 35 representatives of engineering and planning departments at local authorities. The aim is to explore the best practices for local authorities concerning the mechanisms of preserving heritage, as well as the challenges and obstacles it faces with this regard.
Activities' Coordinator at APLA, Shurouq Rabee', presented the most prominent programs and projects APLA is implementing currently, in addition to the online portal to be launched for the works of the Legal and Technical Support Unit at APLA in order to facilitate communication among hubs members. In addition, she mentioned that APLA is intending to develop a specialized training program on the policies of heritage preservation in cooperation with one of the French organizations specialized in this field.
Director of the Restoration and Rehabilitation Department at Riwaq Center, Michael Salameh, provided a clarification on the Center's areas of work and programs, as well as the challenges faced during the implementation of projects, through restoration and adaptation of buildings, in addition to the role of local authorities in restoration processes of old buildings in their areas.
On behalf of local authorities, Eng. Murad Al-Tamimi presented the experience of Hebron Municipality in managing archaeological sites and listing the city on the World Heritage Sites list of UNESCO, qualifying local tour guides to promote and introduce touristic and archaeological sites. Meanwhile, Eng. Enas Marzouqah presented Bethlehem Municipality policies concerning heritage and heritage sites, and Eng. Lina Sbaih presented the main ancient landmarks in Al-Thaheriyah Town as well as Al-Thaheriyah Municipality in maintaining these landmarks and overcoming obstacles and challenges relevant to it.
It is worth mentioning that this workshop was organized under the Technical Hub Project for local authorities, implemented in partnership between APLA and LGRP-GIZ, comprised of five platforms: Engineering and Planning Hub; Public Relations Hub; Financial Management Hub; Village Councils Hub; Innovation and Creativity Hub.