News > Zanzibar's Fabled Stone Town Crumbling

Added on 30-Dec-2005

Zanzibar's Fabled Stone Town Succumbing to Decades of Neglect"Bit by bit, Zanzibar's fabled Stone Town is crumbling. Every year, a few more buildings collapse, leaving yawning gaps in the narrow, winding alleys lined with Arab palaces, Persian baths, British colonial offices, Indian shops and one-time slave chambers.

About 85 percent of the more than 1,000 buildings show signs of structural decline, says Abdu Sheriff, a historian and former curator of national museums. Conservationists estimate at least 200 have fallen in recent decades, including three so far this year. . ."

"Before the revolution, these buildings were properly maintained," Mbarak, 65, says as the Muslim call to prayer mixes with church bells. "Now, they don't repair anything but they increase the rent every year."

Ed: Freddie was born in Zanzibar

Submitted by: Aura Marina

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