Qatar Museums Restores Historic Al Rakiyat Fort in North-East Qatar
Qatar Museums (QM)’s Department of Architectural Conservation has finished the restoration project of the historic Al Rakiyat fort in the northeast region of the Qatar peninsula.The team at QM followed through with the project in alignment with its commitment to preserve, restore and expand the nation's ancient architectural identity, as a part of Qatar's National Vision 2030.
Historical sources state that fort originated somewhere between the 17th and 19th centuries. Its unique, local building style and historic integration into the country’s landscape have made Al Rakiyat (“the well” in Arabic) one of the oldest and most important desert forts in Qatar.
Adel Abdullatif Al Moslamani, Director of Cultural Heritage Conservation at Qatar Museums, quoted: “As part of a concerted effort to safeguard our past for future generations, we set out to restore one of our country’s principal heritage sites to its former glory. Al Rakiyat fort is a breathtaking relic of Qatar’s rich history where our forefathers guarded valuable water resources for nearby coastal villages. With respect for the century-old structure, our team worked carefully to preserve and reinforce the original fort, allowing it to carry on the story of our past for decades to come.”
After the initial restoration of the fort in 1988, the archaeological site suffered environmental damage that took weathered the structural components of the historic building. The current Qatar Museums-led restoration effort imbibed the latest global conservation standards and restoration techniques, using traditional and authentic building materials. Restoration works laid special emphasis on the main structural components of the building, including plaster, flooring, installation of a wooden ceiling, doors, and treatment against pests.
Heritage preservation is a core component of Qatar’s national goal towards economic, human, social, and environmental development, recognizing that all forward-looking progress must be informed by the country’s distinctive Arab and Islamic values and identity. Al Rakiyat fort now stands as an enduring landmark of Qatar’s cultural identity, giving forthcoming generations an important insight into the defense architecture.
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