CAIRO: Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab inaugurated Saturday the multilevel Tahrir Garage, expected to help solvied downtown Cairo’s chronic parking problems, Youm7 reported.
The garage will be free of charge to the public on Saturday and Sunday until noon, said Cairo Governor Galal Saeed.
Shopkeepers and residents placed Egyptian flags on buildings overlooking Egypt’s iconic Tahrir Square to celebrate the opening of the long-awaited garage, expected to hold more than 1,700 cars and 25 buses.
In an attempt to alleviate Cairo traffic and ease traffic flow in downtown Cairo, the work in the four-story garage started in 1997 but was suspended several times over lack of funding, and the continuous demonstrations in the wake of the January 25 Revolution.
With the Arab League headquarters, the Egyptian Museum, the American University in Cairo, several of 5-star hotels and governmental buildings, parking around Tahrir Square has always been a problem, and with rush hour traffic, gridlock can last for hours at peak times.
In 2010, the construction of the garage was assigned to The Arab Contractors Company with a total cost estimated at 1 bilion EGP ($ 140m.)
The Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics stated in 2013 that there are 6.6 million registered cars in Egypt, with 2 million in Cairo.
Cairo’s metropolitan area includes approximately 20 million residents, and its streets are known for choking traffic delays that can last for hours at peak travel times.