Ali El-Awaisi

My thoughts tonight are with the family of Ali El-Awaisi, the 21 year old from Dundee, caught up in the massacre of the flotilla taking much-needed aid to the people of Gaza. Ali’s family have been, as yet, unable to make contact with him following the disgraceful and unlawful actions of Israeli commandos.
I know Ali’s father – Professor Abd al-Fattah El-Awaisi – well, from his period as Principal of the Al-Maktoum Institute in Dundee. Ali was part of a humanitarian relief effort and I hope and pray that he is safe and well.
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Al-Maktoum … and Transport Conference

Busy day today, starting off with a useful meeting this morning with Professor Malory Nye, Principal of the Al-Maktoum Institute For Arabic and Islamic Studies, regarding the proposal for a cultural centre on the former Logie Secondary School site.    Although the project has run behind schedule, I was assured of Dubai’s commitment to the project and it is hoped to see progress in future months.   Meantime, I was pleased to hear that a further clean-up of the site will be organised in the next few weeks, including tree trimming where these are impacting on adjacent properties in Rosefield Street.
 
After that, I chaired a meeting at Gleneagles of Regional Transport Partnership Chairs, with Stewart Stevenson MSP, the Transport Minister, about (rather obviously) Scottish transport issues.  Thereafter, I attended the first couple of sessions at the Scottish CPT Conference (Confederation of Passenger Transport UK) and, on return to Dundee, held two surgeries – at the Mitchell Street Centre and Harris Academy.   A long, but productive day!

Al-Maktoum Cultural Centre Update

Back in November, I reported that, following a meeting I had with Professor Malory Nye, Acting Principal of the Al-Maktoum Institute, I had received an assurance that the former Logie Secondary site (earmarked for the proposed Al-Maktoum Cultural Centre) would be given a tidy up. Residents had complained that it was overgrown and attracting fly-tipping. (See earlier story by clicking the headline above).

I have recently spoke again with the Director of Operations at the Al-Maktoum Institute and I have now received a further update from the Cultural Centre’s architect as follows:

“I can confirm that Mr Al Sayegh has visited Dundee & the site has been cleared of rubbish & plant growth. I have also held a Design Team Meeting to progress the project & fine tune the design in line with our requirements. Hopefully in a few weeks I should be able to update you further with an agreed timescale for the project.”

Given the residents’ concerns about the vacant site, it will be good to receive timescales for the project. I’ll keep residents advised on developments when I receive further feedback.

Former Logie Secondary School site clean-up

Was called earlier this morning by Professor Malory Nye, Acting Principal of the Al-Maktoum Institute to be advised that, following my recent meeting with him when I raised residents’ concerns about the state of the former Logie Secondary School site (earmarked for the proposed Al-Maktoum Cultural Centre), work starts today on tidying the site. The Al-Maktoum Foundation has employed the City Council (Dundee Contract Services) to undertake the work.
I am pleased that the area is to be tidied as there have been many concerns from residents about the state of the area.
Attended West End Community Council last night. An interesting talk by Historic Scotland and useful discussion on a number of local issues too.

Al-Maktoum Cultural Centre and Western Cemetery Association

Today, I met with Professor Malory Nye, Acting Principal of the Al-Maktoum Institute, about the proposals for a Cultural Centre and, in particular, the state of the site of the former Logie Secondary School. I am pleased that Professor Nye confirmed that a further clean-up of the site will take place in the next few weeks, with construction starting in a few months.
At lunchtime, I chaired the inaugural public meeting of the Western Cemetery Association at Harris Academy (click on the headline to see the article in tonight’s Evening Telegraph) and was delighted at the good turnout. The meeting was followed by a tour of the cemetery by the City Archivist.