Award-winning Egyptian architect Salah El Din Hareedy dies after contracting Covid-19

He was among the team of Egyptian architects who won the UN design comeptition for the reconstruction of Mosul's Al-Nouri Mosque

Dr. Salah Haridi, head of the winning team in the international architectural competition for the reconstruction and rehabilitation of Al-Nuri Mosque in Mosul. courtesy: Noura Al Kaabi twitter account

Unesco prize-winning Egyptian architect Salah El Din Hareedy, who won a competition to redesign Mosul's historic Al-Nouri Mosque, died on Saturday in his home town of Alexandria. He died of complications from Covid-19.

News of Hareedy's death was shared by his wife Marwa Mahfouz in a Facebook post on Saturday.

"My husband, my life partner, my lover and everything I need ... Professor Dr Salah El Din Samir Hareedy is in God’s protection," Mahfouz wrote.

Hareedy has also been mourned by Alexandria University’s Faculty of Fine Arts, where he had been a professor for many years. His colleagues have called him one of the most knowledgeable and well-read professors in the faculty's history.

Iraqi Museum, the winning design of the international competition for the reconstruction of the Al-Nuri Mosque and Al-Manara Al-Hadba in Mosul was announced. A step to start actual work despite the pandemic. courtesy: Hassan Nadhem twitter account

This year, Hareedy, along with a team of seven other architects, won a UN competition launched through its cultural arm Unesco, to submit the design for the reconstruction of Iraq's Al-Nouri Mosque, which was destroyed by ISIS militants in 2017.

Hareedy's team's design beat 123 entries in the competition.

The submitted plans stay true to the original design of the mosque before its destruction. However, it also features some marked improvements, such as expanded space for women and dignitaries, and better use of natural light.

Hareedy's team were set to start implementing their design in autumn this year and their prize money amounted to $50,000.

Hareedy contracted Covid-19 this month and after being hospitalised, his condition worsened.

During one televised interview on Egyptian TV, Hareedy expressed his commitment to the rebuilding of the mosque, explaining that he saw it as a personal responsibility to repair what terrorism had destroyed.

Hareedy is survived by Mahfouz, an interior design lecturer at Alexandria University, and their two sons. The couple worked together in the architectural office they founded, called Heads Egypt.