The Farid Trad collection (some 12 feet) is a true treasure trove of maps, plans, and photos documenting the urban planning, and fabric of Beirut and a few other cities in the region, from the 40s on.It contains many rare and hard to locate documents related to the urban planning of Beirut, and a few other Arab cities. The collection is also a testimony to the birth of modern architecture in the region, offering a rare document of some key modern architectural buildings in Lebanon (UNESCO building, 1947, Adlieh Building, etc.), the airport warehouses (designed with a special view to use concrete, allowing the ceilings to be extremely thin), Cinema Dunia in downtown Beirut, Hotel Regent (downtown Beirut), Jisr al Wati (al wati bridge) and Hotel Samiramis (Damascus).This is a true treasure trove for architects, urban planners, anthropologists, historians, economists, as well as critical theorists and activists interested in the social and urban history of Lebanon.
Farid Trad (1901-1969) was born in Beirut at the turn of the century. He graduated from the Ecole Centrale des Arts et Manufactures, Paris, 1926. Mr. Farid Trad was a pioneer architect and urban planner who played a critical role in shaping and planning the urban fabric, the idea of public space, and "reseaux routiers" of Beirut and Lebanon during a formative period of the Nation State's modern history. This collection is a rare and extremely valuable testimony to his vision, and contribution to urban planning in Lebanon.