Mirza Shafi street in Tbilisi has been totally demolished under the renewal scheme initiated by the municipality and private inverstors. Not only the buildings but part of the mountain is also being destroied. All these interventions are conducted with no supervision of archaeologists and with total neglect of the legal procedures.
On monday 2 march the first protest action was held by the Tbilisi Preservation Society - Tfilisis Hamqari. The pressure from this organization resulted in halting the discussion on the future project, however there is nothing to be done with the destroied townscape of Abanotubani - the oldest part of Tbilisi city.
The uncontrolled new development in the heart of Old Town is likely to be continued. All the professionals and citizens alike should stand together against the neo-dictatorship of the authorities. At the moment there is no information available for public on the plans and ongoing processes in Tbilisi and there is no transparency in decision making. Tfilisis Hamqari is planning new campaigns.
International support can be realised through opening the discussion on the subject of rehabilitation and future of old cities. Whose heritage it is? To whom does the city belong? Who decides upon our living environments? What should we do to save our heritage? these and other questions should be put forward to prepare the conceptual basis for analysing the development problems of Tbilisi in the current socio-political and economic context.