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Sunday, December 2, 2007
Metro station construction threatens Tehran’s City Theater Complex
Tehran Times Art Desk
TEHRAN -- The outlook of Tehran’s most important theater venues, the City Theater Complex, is being threatened by the construction of a metro station directly in front of its yard.
Located at the southeastern corner of the junction of Vali-e Asr and Enqelab streets, the City Theater Complex has been registered on Iran’s National Cultural Heritage List. Construction of the complex was commenced in 1967 and it was opened to the public in 1972.
Tehran Urban and Suburban Railway Company began the process of fencing off the area ready for construction of the metro station on Wednesday night, complex director Mehrdad Rayani-Makhsus told the Persian service of CHN on Saturday.
“The project workmen at first denied having any connections with the metro company saying that their activities were related to the renovation of cobblestones in the location, but notices put up nearby indicate that the operations were in fact being carried out in readiness for the construction of a metro station,” he explained.
“Unfortunately, we are unable to prevent the project from going ahead,” Rayani-Makhsus sighed.
The idea for the establishment of a metro station near the Theater Complex was discussed several years ago, but the project was stopped as a result of objections made by the Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts Organization.
The structure of the theater venue has already been partially damaged when Tehran’s Municipality built a religious cultural complex in its parking lot in 2003.
Damages caused by this project to the walls of the Theater Complex resulted in officials having to close the venue for reconstruction work to be carried out -- furthermore repair work has not yet been completed