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Project Profile

 

2006 Honourable Mention

Leh Old Town

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Jury Citation

This small-scale project has catalyzed a conservation and urban rehabilitation movement in the ancient capital of Ladakh by successfully undertaking the pilot restoration of a residential neighborhood which includes a range of building typologies. By conducting a detailed social survey alongside a conservation inventory, the needs of the population were addressed in an integrated way. Through low-cost restoration using indigenous knowledge, skills and materials, it has demonstrated the feasibility for residents and authorities to upgrade historic quarters for modern living. Training of local workers in all aspects of the work, even in mural cleaning and stabilization, lays the foundation for the continued empowerment of the community. Contributions by homeowners and the municipal government to the conservation of private houses and public infrastructure, respectively, ensure a local investment to the work. The spin-off effects of the project are evident, with expressions of interest from other homeowners and the local government to continue with additional works to conserve other heritage structures in the Leh old town.