x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Al Ain National Museum to undergo major facelift

A new museum will be constructed adjacent to the existing facility, which opened in 1971.

ABU DHABI // The country's oldest museum is about to get a major facelift, thanks to an infusion of funding from the Executive Council.

Al Ain National Museum, an institution that focuses on the country's culture and heritage, has not been significantly changed since it initially opened in 1971.

But a new building will be constructed adjacent to the current structure in about three years, officials from the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage (Adach) said today.

Dr Sami El Masri, the deputy director general of arts, culture and heritage at Adach, said the new museum will be developed with the eastern region's tourism aspirations in mind.

"Now that Al Ain has become a World Heritage site, our museum needs to have universal significance," Dr El Masri said. "It's no longer just local. We need to cater to a wider audience."

The new space will feature exhibition space and training facilities and programmes will focus on "education, entertainment, engagement and events," Dr El Masri said.

Adach will also work to preserve the Hili Archaeological Park, a site where significant remains from the Bronze and Iron ages have been discovered.

jthomas@thenational.ae